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Discovery Zoo

They are adorable, furry, feathered, and sometimes even scaly, but most visitors agree – the residents of the Discovery Zoo are a must-see on every trip to the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery. Managed by the Live Animals Department, the Discovery Zoo consists of over one hundred animals and insects, ranging from entertaining river otters and engaging prehensile-tailed porcupines, to the ever-popular meerkats.

Live Animals

Though the Discovery Zoo houses myriad Animal Ambassadors, some of the wet and wild animals can also be found in the Discovery Zoo Vet Hospital, Bieser Edcuation Center and the Tidal Pool. The Discovery Zoo Vet Hospital is home to some of the “creepiest” critters which are often misunderstood because of their "scary" appearance, while the Tidal Pool is home to crustaceans and other creatures that inhabit the shore. So whether you stop by the Bieser Discovery Center to hang out with Rajeev, the Museum’s 16-foot-long Burmese python, or take a trip to the Tidal Pool to discover an indoor shoreline, there are live animal experiences to be found around every corner of the Boonshoft Museum.

Featured Animal of the Month


Our Featured Animal of the Month is Splasher, on of our American river otters! A favorite for many visitors, the rambunctious brothers are known for their active play -- and their ability to nap at the drop of a hat. You can see them in the Discovery Zoo every day, but don't miss the afternoon keeper talk by their enclosure to learn more about them from one of our zookeepers as they receive their afternoon snack.

Celebrate this amazing animal by selecting an item from our Live Animal Amazon Wish List.

Support the Discovery Zoo! Adopt an Animal Today

Support the Discovery Zoo by adopting one of your favorite zoo residents for the coming year! Show your love for the animals, knowing that your support will provide the care and enrichment needed to keep them safe, happy, and healthy.

With options for both children and grown-ups, that include add-on programs such as a Behind-the-Scenes Tour and a Junior Zookeeper experience, you will know that your support for the animals in the zoo is helping us provide for the animals in our care.

The Behind the Scenes Zoo Tour offers an after-hours look at how we manage animal care, and includes multiple opportunities to interact with the animals in the Discovery Zoo.

Junior Zookeeper participants spend two (2) hours on a Saturday morning with the animals and one of our zookeepers, learning about what goes into the care of our Discovery Zoo residents. This unique program includes hands-on interaction with our furry, feathered and scaly zoo crew, as well as the chance to make an enrichment item for the animals.

Learn more about the Adopt an Animal program and these exclusive experiences.

Zoo on the Move... Animals Alive!

Let us bring our Education animals to you, so students can get up close and personal at your school or community gathering. Learn about the behaviors and habitats of some of our adorable, cuddley, creepy, and crawly animals. Programs are conservation-based, and explain how important each of these creatures is to the environment. 

Daytime: $155 per program; $145 for each additional progam

Preschool & Pre-K Groups: Programs are 45 minutes, with a maximum of 30 students per program.
All Other Groups: Programs are 60 minutes, with a maximum of 50 participants.

Interested in bringing our Animal Ambassadors to a community event or festival?  A two hour session that can accommodate walk-by participants is available for $200.

Because of a generous grant from the Kenneth A. Scott Charitable Trust, A KeyBank Trust, the Boonshoft Museum also offers free live animal programs to qualifying schools in Montgomery and Clark County.

For more information about Animals Alive, the qualifications for funded programs, or to book a program, please email LiveAnimals@boonshoftmuseum.org or call 937.275.7431, ext. 116.

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    Boonshoft Museum


    Meet the newest member of our Discovery Zoo crew today (2/16) at 1:00! This your red-tailed boa wants to meet our M… https://t.co/Ax9qBcC1CE