About the Oregon Zoo

The 64-acre Oregon Zoo is located in Portland, a city and surrounding metropolitan area of more than 1.5 million people. Attendance in 2012 was close to 1.6 million.

Oregon Zoo facts and numbers

The zoo's annual operating budget is derived from a tax base through Metro, the Portland-area regional government that is the zoo's governing body, plus zoo admissions, concessions, contributions, special promotions, the Oregon Zoo Foundation and grants.

Since March 2010, Kimberly A. Smith has been the zoo director.

The zoo has five major exhibit areas: Great Northwest, Fragile Forests, Asia, Pacific Shores and Africa. Within these large areas are 23 specialized exhibits.

Animals of the Oregon Zoo

  • 1,955 individual animals represent 232 species of birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, fish and invertebrates*
  • 22 endangered species and 37 threatened species live at the zoo.*
  • The zoo is active in 21 Species Survival Plans.*

Plants of the Oregon Zoo

  • Native plants of the Pacific Northwest's temperate rainforests have been cultivated to create naturalistic exhibits, pathways and vistas within the zoo.
  • More than 1,000 species of exotic plants thrive in the zoo's botanical gardens, including firebird heliconia, pelican flower and ground orchid. Some are harvested and given to the animals as browse.

In 2008, voters approved a $125 million bond measure to fund zoo improvements to facilities, some of which dated to the 1950s and 1960s. In 2011, the Metro council approved a 20-year master plan to guide these improvements to guest and animal spaces. The plan initially focuses on replacing and upgrading the oldest areas of the zoo campus and building a new Veterinary Medical Center, which opened in 2012.

*Zoo animal data as of December 31, 2012