Category Archives: What’s New

It’s Red Panda Time

Hogle Zoo Announces Exciting News!

SALT LAKE CITY (Feb. 7) – Utah’s Hogle Zoo is excited to announce the addition of not one, but two red pandas making their way to Salt Lake City this spring! The Janet Q. Lawson Red Panda exhibit is named after long-time Zoo board member and generous donor to the Zoo. The 3 1/2 year-old male and the seven year-old female will make Hogle Zoo their permanent home once the exhibit opens. Currently at Reid Park Zoo in Tucson, AZ, the two are already familiar with each other and get along great. Everyone wants to know: Will there be babies? Yes – it’s hopeful, eventually.

Utah’s Hogle Zoo is partnering with the Red Panda Network – hard at work saving this beautiful species in its native habitat. Numbers of red pandas in the wild are estimated to be fewer than 25,000 due, primarily, to loss of habitat and the illegal pet trade. Learn more about Red Pandas.

The Zoo is proud to bring back this photogenic species after a 10 year hiatus and eager to connect Utah to their friends in the far reaches of the Himalayas.

Facts about Red Pandas:

  • -Red Pandas are sometimes called “Firefox” or “lesser pandas”
  • -Red Pandas live in the mountainous areas of Nepal and southwestern China.
  • -Red Panda diet consists mostly of bamboo.
  • -Red Panda gestation is roughly 4 1/2 months and litters are typically two cubs.
  • -Red Pandas have thick fur over their entire body, even the soles of their feet to conserve body heat.

Every time you visit the Zoo, you are helping animals in the wild. 

Baby Burrowing Owlets

Lucy and Digger, our burrowing owl pair, recently hatched their first brood of chicks. They are the proud parents of three owlets hatched on June 20, 2015 in the exhibit in the Small Animals Building.

Digger was a wonderful provider for Lucy when she was incubating the eggs. (Only the females incubate the eggs until they hatch – about four weeks.) He made sure to bring her plenty of mice and king worms. The two are great parents, taking exceptional care of their chicks who are quickly growing up!

Read about Burrowing Owls.

Markhor Goats

Four male Turkmenian Markhor goats arrived at Hogle Zoo on May 12, 2015 from the Bronx Zoo.  After a short stay in the Zoo’s hospital, the year-old goats were moved to their new home along the Zoo’s south pathway just past Asian Highlands.  In the wild, these nimble goats are prey species of Amur leopard, snow leopard and Amur tigers.

Learn more about Markhors.

Lions Return to the Zoo

With the opening of African Savanna in 2014, the Zoo brought in two male and two female African lions. The two female sisters, Seyla and Nabu were born in 2012 and came from the Woodland Park Zoo in Washington. The two male brothers, Vulcan and Baron were born in 2011 at the Birmingham Zoo in Alabama.

The Zoo has not had lions for nearly 10 years, so were excited to be bringing back the King of Beasts as part of the Zoo’s newest and largest exhibit.  The males and females will be introduced eventually and as part of the Species Survival Plan (SSP) they will be allowed to breed and hopefully produce offspring that will help contribute to the long-term survival of this majestic species.

BoyLionsUntil they are introduced, the males and females will divide their time in their main exhibit, Lion’s Hill,  and their off-exhibit area. Lion’s Hill features heated concrete areas, cool grottos, and atop the hill, perfect rock perches where guests will be able to get amazing photos through floor-to-ceiling windows.  Guests will be nose-to-nose with the piercing golden eyes of the predators with the Wasatch mountains serving as a picturesque backdrop.

Learn more about lions.