About The Zoological Society of Florida
The Zoological Society of Florida (ZSF) is the non-profit support organization for Zoo Miami. ZSF was founded in 1956, when the Zoo was located in Crandon Park, Key Biscayne. Starting in the mid-Sixties, Zoo members spearheaded a campaign to include plans for a bigger, better zoo on the Dade County "Decade of Progress" bond issue. Voters approved the bond in 1972, and nine years later Zoo Miami opened its gates to the public at its current location.
Today, the Zoological Society of Florida is one of the largest membership organizations in South Florida. Its Board of Directors includes community leaders in Miami-Dade and Broward counties who are committed to the education, conservation, and recreation goals of Zoo Miami. While Miami-Dade County operates and maintains the Zoo, ZSF backed by its strong membership supports Zoo Miami's programs and enhancements.
The ZSF activities and programs include:
- Volunteer Services and programs. Over 200 volunteers perform a variety of services including exhibit interpretation, guided tours, and educational outreach to support local schools, among other groups.
- Education programs are designed to provide our multi-ethnic community with a greater appreciation of our environment and its wildlife. These programs are available for people of all ages.
- Marketing and Public Relations efforts increase public awareness of the animal exhibits, the conservation role of the Zoo, special events and programs. The Society also provides an e-newsletter, Toucan Talk.
- Construction and renovation of Zoo Miami exhibits are areas of support provided by ZSF.
Dr. Wilde's World
Dr. Wilde's World is an example of how ZSF works with Zoo Miami to enhance the visitor's experience at the Zoo. The magnificent air-conditioned gallery showcases permanent, seasonal and traveling exhibits featuring varied topics, regions of the world, and cultures. Hands-on interactive exhibits, the 100-inch "BatchelorVision" video screen, and two classrooms are available for everyone to enjoy. The gallery is surrounded by a beautifully landscaped plaza, alive with large sculptures of animals from river habitats around the world. Sounds of birds, insects and the river animals fill the air along with a rolling enveloping mist.
Special events are created and scheduled on a regular basis to give visitors a perspective of the Zoo that is both fun and educational. Annual events include:
- The Great Zoo Miami Egg Safari
- Zoofari Spring and Summer Camps
Holiday Gifts for the Animals
ZSF is committed to Zoo Miami as a vital resource whose purpose goes beyond that of a popular attraction. Zoo Miami is about life. With a nationally renowned captive-breeding program, the Zoo is a sanctuary for endangered, rare, and threatened animals. It is an educational / recreational center, a place to learn the importance of preserving the wonderful creatures who share our planet.