Program areas at Denver Zoological Foundation
Life sciences: Denver zoo's mission is inspiring communities to save wildlife for future generations. Our largest program area is caring for our animal residents. Denver zoo is a recognized leader in all areas relating to the highest level of care for our animal collection as we are focused on providing the best nutritional, emotional, social, and physical care possible. Animals at Denver zoo are very well cared for by their dedicated keepers, animal behaviorists, veterinary medicine, zoo nutrition and welfare staff. Our animals are bred under the recommendations of the association of zoos and aquariums' (aza) species survival plan (ssp), which ensures genetic diversity and healthy populations. Animal welfare is everyone's job at Denver zoo. Denver zoo is accredited by the aza and certified by american humane.
Learning experiences: Denver zoos conservation learning and engagement, community engagement, and community research & evaluation teams aim to help students, families, and communities connect with the environment, become scientific thinkers, and ultimately champions for animals and habitats. The Denver zoo is a one-of-a-kind place where people of all ages and backgrounds can experience the joy and wonders of animals, conservation, and the environment. The conservation learning team hosted a variety of virtual and in-person learning experiences which were very well received by our local schools and community partners. The Denver zoo had nearly 27,000 participants in education and outreach programs.
Guest experiences: Denver zoo exists to help our community connect with wildlife here and around the world so that we can all be part of the solution to helping species thrive. Our passion and reason for being is to inspire communities to save wildlife for future generations. We achieve this by providing an outstanding guest experience each and every day. Denver zoo monitors and evaluates the visitor experience through a mystery shopper program, guest comment cards and extensive guest satisfaction surveys. The Denver zoo continues to make a profound impact, creating meaningful experiences for guests, both at the Denver zoo and off-site in the community, engaging citizens through impactful animal encounters that inspire a lifelong love of science learning. The Denver zoo is a place where visitors make local, regional, and international connections, linking people, animals, and nature. The Denver zoo connects people with animals, inspiring them to champion the Denver zoo's mission to inspire communities to save wildlife for future generations. As an accredited association of zoos and aquariums (aza) institution, the Denver zoo is an important resource for the Denver metro region to understand wildlife and the need to conserve the places animals live. The Denver zoo's visitors learn about the important role zoos have as leaders in conservation research. With up-close experiences, visitors experience a stronger connection to nature, consider their role in environmental problems and conservation action, and see themselves as part of the solution as a result of their visit. Denver zoo inspires communities to save wildlife for futurer generations. Our community connections program ensures equitable access to the zoo and our wildlife conservation programs for all community members. Through this program, Denver zoo ensures at least 25% of annual visitors enjoy the zoo and zoo programs for free or significantly reduced fees.
Field conservation: the Denver zoo is a zoo-based conservation organization and a dedicated player in the movement to save wildlife. We support community-led field work in Colorado and globally for animals and habitats in the wild. Our approach is to work with communities to understand conservation issues, then co-develop sustainable strategies to protect wildlife and wild places. Denver zoo is a leader among zoos in field conservation. In addition to connecting audiences with a wide variety of species at our 84 acre urban campus, we work to protect animals and habitat through four core programs around the world in - mongolia, vietnam, peru, and the Colorado rocky mountains and great plains. We commit full-time, part-time, and contract staff along with other resources to these programs each year. Using both social and ecological science to identify and understand target species and threats to their survival, we work to mitigate threats by strengthening protected area management, engaging local communities, influencing conservation policy, and building the capacity of individuals and organizations to engage in conservation action.