Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
500 Ninos Drive
Santa Barbara, CA  93103
(805) 962-5339 (Phone)   |   (805) 962-1673 (Fax)
Website   |   Our Calendar

OUR CALENDAR
Year Founded:
    1961

Description:
   The Santa Barbara Zoo is dedicated to the preservation, conservation and enhancement of the natural world and its living treasures through education, research, and recreation. There are over 600 animals (180+ species), carousel, train, and much more.
    Many people become members of the zoo becoming involved in helping to conserve rare and endangered species. As a Member, you will receive free or discounted admission to over 100 other zoos in the United States. As a private, non-profit corporation, we need support of our members to care for our animals, acquire new animals, and build new exhibits.
    The Zoo offers workshops to help teachers integrate the Zoo into their science curriculum. Teachers will learn to use biological artifacts as instructional models. After completing the workshop, teachers will be able to lead a tour using our hands-on Bio-Bags during their zoo visit! The course will include an introduction to Zoology, Zoo history, and environmental education.
    The Zoo is located on over 30 acres with its lovely gardens and picturesque views overlooking East Beach -- approximately 30 minutes North of Ventura, and 30 minutes South of Solvang. Note: We do not allow skateboards, rollerblades, bicycles, RV's, dogs or barbecues in the Zoo or the parking lot. Thank you for your cooperation.

Animals on Exhibit:
    Alligators & Crocodiles,   Amphibians,   Birds,   Elephants,   Fish,   Giraffes,   Hoofstock,   Hyraxes,   Invertebrates,   Lions, Tigers, etc.,   Lizards,   Mammals,   Parrots,   Pigeons & Doves,   Primates,   Snakes,   Swine,   Turtles & Tortoises,   Wading Birds,   Waterfowl,  

Business Categories:
    Museums/Attractions/Historic,    Zoo,

Business Hours:
    10 AM to 5 PM every day except Thanksgiving & Christmas.

Payment Accepted:
    Cash,   Check,   Amex,   MasterCard,   Visa,  

Location Type:
    Zoo

Languages Spoken:
    English,   Spanish,  

Legal Entity:
    Non-Profit

Average Visit:
    2 hours

Parking On-Site?
    Yes  

Guided Tours?
    By Appointment Only

Gift Certificates?
    Available for Sale

Classes Offered?
    Yes.


 Recent News & Buzz!!
1/21/16 - This Sunday ... Santa Barbara Zoo Job & Volunteer Expo
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Are you looking for an unforgettable job or volunteer experience? Check out the annual Santa Barbara Zoo Job and Volunteer Fair, where you’ll learn all about the Zoo’s employment and volunteer opportunities, which include the award-winning Guest Experience Specialist (GES) program, as well as Special Event Hosts, Zoo Camp Counselors, Educators, Docents, Keeper Aides, Climbing Wall Monitors, Train Conductors, and performers for the Zoo’s stage shows.
Intended to be a “first job” for youth, GES positions are available to those as young as 14 who rotate between jobs in three areas: guest services, restaurants, and retail stores. In addition to their job duties, participants are introduced to work ethics and basic skills, such as how to provide excellent customer service, write a resume or be in a job interview.
No reservations or appointments are necessary. Parking is free for participants, and check-in is at the front gate. Parents/guardians of teens are welcome. For more information, contact Corinne Santini by phone (805) 962-5339, ext. 108 or email at csantini@sbzoo.org. ... Presented by: Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens ... Venue: Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens  Email
1/8/16 - Save the Date! Santa Barbara Zoo Job & Volunteer Expo -- January 24
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Are you looking for an unforgettable job or volunteer experience? Check out the annual Santa Barbara Zoo Job and Volunteer Fair, where you’ll learn all about the Zoo’s employment and volunteer opportunities, which include the award-winning Guest Experience Specialist (GES) program, as well as Special Event Hosts, Zoo Camp Counselors, Educators, Docents, Keeper Aides, Climbing Wall Monitors, Train Conductors, and performers for the Zoo’s stage shows.
Intended to be a “first job” for youth, GES positions are available to those as young as 14 who rotate between jobs in three areas: guest services, restaurants, and retail stores. In addition to their job duties, participants are introduced to work ethics and basic skills, such as how to provide excellent customer service, write a resume or be in a job interview.
No reservations or appointments are necessary. Parking is free for participants, and check-in is at the front gate. Parents/guardians of teens are welcome. For more information, contact Corinne Santini by phone (805) 962-5339, ext. 108 or email at csantini@sbzoo.org. ... Presented by: Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens ... Venue: Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
11/17/15 - Save the Date! Thanksgiving Day Pumpkin Smash -- 11/26
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Animal lovers are encouraged to get the kids out of the house this Thanksgiving and come to the Zoo for a smashin’ good time! Watch as the elephants, gorillas, and more of your favorite Zoo animals get pumpkins to play and interact with. Lots of animals will get to play with pumpkins today!
Early Closure: General admission ticket sales end at 2:30 p.m., membership admission ends at 3:00 p.m., Zoo closes at 3:30 p.m.
Presented by ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
Venue ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens  Website
9/30/15 - This Saturday ... enjoy the fun at Zoo's Line Is It Anyway?
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A mash-up of a TED-type talk with improv comedy in a club-like setting includes no host beer and wine, DJ spinning tunes, live music, and audience participation. Animal experts share their work, which becomes fodder for spontaneous skits by Impro Theatre members (“Jane Austen Unscripted”).
Presented by ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
Venue ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens  Website
8/31/15 - Free Film Screening: “The Condor’s Shadow” -- Saturday 9/5 at the Zoo
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Set in the ruggedly beautiful Southern California habitat of the iconic California condor, this film explores the great hope and extreme lengths that biologists and zookeepers (including those from Santa Barbara Zoo), scientists, and a feisty condor, bring to the task of pulling the condor back from the brink of extinction. Shown in the Santa Barbara Zoo’s Discovery Pavilion. Followed by condor biologist Q & A
Presented by ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
Venue ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens - Discovery Pavilion  Website
8/27/15 - Don't Miss It! Zoofari Ball XXX - Zoo Orleans -- Saturday Evening at the Zoo
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The wildest fundraiser in Santa Barbara takes on a New Orleans flavor this year. Guests will let the good times roll, sip Sazeracs, eat Cajun-inspired cuisine, and dance under the stars. Both silent and live auctions hold surprises and help support the Zoo. Zoofari usually sells out in advance, so make your reservations early! Pricing: $300 before August 1; $350 after August 1. Reservations available June 1.
Early Closure: General admission ticket sales end at 2:30 p.m., membership admission ends at 3:00 p.m., Zoo closes at 3:30 p.m.
Presented by ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
Venue ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens  Website
8/14/15 - August 29 - Zoofari Ball has New Orleans Theme
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The wildest fundraiser in Santa Barbara takes on a New Orleans flavor this year. Guests will let the good times roll, sip Sazeracs, eat Cajun-inspired cuisine, and dance under the stars. Both silent and live auctions hold surprises and help support the Zoo. Zoofari usually sells out in advance, so make your reservations early! Pricing: $300 before August 1; $350 after August 1. Reservations available June 1.
Early Closure: General admission ticket sales end at 2:30 p.m., membership admission ends at 3:00 p.m., Zoo closes at 3:30 p.m.
Presented by ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
Venue ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens  Website
7/15/15 - Sunset Sips at the Zoo ... Thursday @ 5:30 PM until 7:30 PM
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Guests can drink in the view – and local wine – at the Zoo’s scenic hilltop on the third Thursdays of June, July, and August. Enjoy special animal encounters, train rides, and hors d’oeuvres. Sip until the sun sets! For guests 21+ only. Cost: $30/person, includes GO VINO glass. Tickets available online.
Presented by ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
Venue ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens  Website
7/15/15 - Saving Snow Leopards -- Thursday evening at the S.B. Zoo
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Did you know a snow leopard’s tail is actually a giant muscle that weighs ten pounds used for jumping and balancing? Exquisite, elusive, and endangered, the snow leopard makes its home in some of the world’s harshest, most remote environments. Today, these cats walk a delicate path between life and extinction. Marissa Niranjan of the Snow Leopard Trust delves into this incredible species, gives a unique, bird’s-eye view of their habitat, and reveals what it takes to protect them in the wild.
Find out about the successful conservation programs in the key Central Asia countries in the snow leopards’ home range, and what the future may hold for these magnificent big cats. Doors open at 6:30 p.m., lecture begins at 7 p.m. Cost: $6/person; $5/person for SB Zoo Members.
Presented by ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
Venue ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens  Website
5/20/15 - Get your Zoo Brew tickets before they Sell out!
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The Zoo's annual Zoo Brew features tastings from a whole herd of breweries from the Central Coast region and beyond. Enjoy special animal encounters at the hilltop, too! Ticket price includes Zoo admission, a commemorative tasting glass, and unlimited tastings from participating brewers. Special Zoo Brew food and merchandise available for purchase.
Presented by ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
Venue ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens  Website
3/6/15 - Finally ... it's Princess Day! -- Saturday, March 7
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There’s no better time than the season when clocks “spring forward” to honor the world’s many and varied frogs and amphibians. Meet Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, Rapunzel, and other princesses in person as they help celebrate frogs. There are also frog-inspired crafts, games, and special animal appearances. All costumed princesses welcome – as are knights, pirates, and cowboys. Learn how zoos and aquariums are working to save the world’s threatened amphibians.
It’s B.Y.O.T. (Bring Your Own Tiara), and costumes are encouraged… frog kissing is optional.
Presented by ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
Venue ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens  Website
1/22/15 - Looking for a wild summer job? Come to the Santa Barbara Zoo Job & Volunteer Expo -- 2/8
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Check out the annual Santa Barbara Zoo Job & Volunteer Expo, where you’ll learn all about the Zoo’s summer job opportunities, which include the award-winning Guest Experience Specialist (GES) program, as well as Special Event Hosts, Zoo Camp Counselors, Education Program Instructors, Climbing Wall Monitors, Train Conductors, and performers for the Zoo’s stage shows.
Intended to be a “first job” for youth, GES positions are available to those as young as 14 who rotate between jobs in three areas: guest services, restaurants, and retail stores. In addition to their job duties, participants are introduced to work ethics and basic skills, such as how to provide excellent customer service, write a resume or be in a job interview.
Information about volunteer opportunities is also available at the Expo, including Zoo Camp Counselor-in-Training (ages 13 to 17), Keeper Aide, and Docent. Several close-up animal encounters will also take place.
No reservations or appointments are necessary. Parking is free for participants, and check-in is at the front gate. For more information, contact Corinne Santini by phone (805) 962-5339, ext. 108 or email csantini@sbzoo.org.
Presented by ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
Venue ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens  Website
11/14/14 - Giraffe Calf Born at SB Zoo on Thursday Afternoon
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The Santa Barbara Zoo’s Masai giraffe Audrey has given birth to a male calf, her third in four years, and it has been named Buttercup by donors. The six-year old mother gave birth on Thursday, November 13 in the Giraffe Barn at 1:45 p.m., just one hour and 45 minutes after labor was observed. He attempted to stand up after approximately 15 minutes, but needed human assistance to help him to his feet when he continued to slip on the muddy surface. Buttercup first nursed at 4:11 p.m.
Buttercup is off-exhibit with his mother in the Giraffe Barn, where he will have his first medical exam tomorrow. His height, weight, and general health will be assessed by the Zoo’s veterinarian Dr. Julie Barnes, who will also determine when he will be able to leave the Barn. Until that time, Buttercup and Audrey are not on view to the public or available to media.
“Our professional staff prepared for and implemented the plan for an easy and healthy birth,” said Zoo Director Nancy McToldridge. “Everything went smoothly, even when Buttercup needed to be moved to a drier spot in order to stand up.”
“Because they are just over one hundred Masai giraffes in captivity in North America, each birth and each giraffe is very important,” said Sheri Horiszny, Director of Animal Care. “I’m very proud of our sire Michael, as he’s now clearly a proven breeder, and his genetics greatly help the diversity of our Masai population.”
The Zoo’s other female giraffe Betty Lou is also pregnant, and giraffe keepers estimate that she will give birth in March 2015. The sire in both pregnancies is Michael, the Zoo’s only male giraffe. Giraffes have a 14.5-month gestation period.   Website
11/12/14 - Second Birth for Giant Anteater Pair Anara and Ridley at Santa Barbara Zoo
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A second male pup within one year has been born to a pair of giant anteaters at the Santa Barbara Zoo. The latest pup, born on Thursday, November 6, is being reared by its mother in a holding area, and will not be on view to the public for at least two weeks.
The older pup, born in March, is on view at the Zoo until next week, when he leaves for Staten Island Zoo as part of a cooperative breeding program of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA).
The pup born in March was the first giant anteater born at the Zoo since 2006, and the first offspring for adult pair Anara and Ridley. He was one of a pair of twins, but the female newborn pup did not survive. Twins in anteaters are rare, though Anara (aged 2) is a twin and was also hand-raised, at the Fresno Zoo. The sire Ridley, is 6 years old and was imported from Germany’s Zoo Dortmund in 2008 by the AZA,
“While we were delighted with the success of our hand-reared offspring from Spring 2014, we are even more excited that Anara is figuring out how to be a good Mom on her own this time,” said Sheri Horiszny, Director of Animal Care. “We imported Dad, Ridley, from Germany four years ago to add to the genetics of the North American population, and we are pleased that we are now beginning to make that contribution.”   Website
8/22/14 - SB Zoo's Volunteer Expo is Sept. 6th
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People with a love of animals and a passion for nature are wanted to join the Santa Barbara Zoo’s volunteer program. Short-term or on-going volunteer positions are available, for both adults aged 18 and over, and teens in both junior high and high school. Docents, keeper aides, California condor nest watchers, and Zoo Camp counselors in training are just a few of the opportunities to help support the Zoo’s conservation, animal, and education activities. The Zoo’s many volunteer opportunities will be revealed at a Volunteer Expo, held on Saturday, September 6 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Zoo’s Discovery Pavilion.
Admission to the Volunteer Expo is free. For more information about the Volunteer Expo at the Zoo, visit www.sbzoo.org or email smclemore@sbzoo.org.
“If you love animals and enjoy working with people, the Santa Barbara Zoo is the place for you,” says Zoo Director Nancy McToldridge. “The Zoo is a success today thanks largely to the generosity of our volunteers.”
More than 500 individuals volunteered their time and talents in 2013, but volunteers are still needed. Team members from all Zoo departments will be on hand to discuss the positions.
A new Zoo Teen Program mirrors many of the adult opportunities, but also counts towards Community Service requirements.
“The Santa Barbara Zoo is a fantastic place for people to donate their time,” says Shomari McLemore, the Zoo’s Volunteer Manager. “Our volunteers utilize and develop their skills with both on-the-job and structured training, all in a nurturing environment. Their work here is truly beneficial, not only for them, but also for the community.”
Benefits of volunteering at the Santa Barbara Zoo include free individual admission to the Zoo during regular business hours, continuing education programs, access to the Zoo library, discounts at the Zoo gift shop and restaurants, and more.   Website
8/6/14 - Still time! Summer Zoo Camp lasts until August 22nd
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June 16 - August 22 ..... Voted “best summer camp” by both Independent and Santa Barbara News-Press readers’ polls, Zoo Camp introduces kids ages 3 to 12 to the wild world of animals and science. Age-appropriate themed programs include games, teacher-led workshops, behind-the-scenes visits, up-close animal introductions, hands-on science, and animal-related crafts, songs and skits. Register online or contact the Conservation Education Department by email or phone: (805) 679-8500. Cost: $185/half day for SB Zoo Members; $225/half day for non-members and $245/full day for SB Zoo Members; $295/full day for non-members.
Morning Session: for Jr. Rangers (3-5) and Explorers (6-8) – 8:00 a.m. - 12:15 p.m. Afternoon Session: for Jr. Rangers (3-5) and Explorers (6-8) – 11:45 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Full-Day Session: for Explorers (6-8) and Conservation Crew (9-12) – 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Presented by ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
Venue ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens  Website
8/6/14 - Don't wait! Zoofari Ball XXIX-Spyfari tickets (8/23) will see out!
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The wildest party in Santa Barbara goes clandestine with a sophisticated and stylish evening of mystery. Martinis are shaken, a gourmet dinner is sure to satisfy, and there’s dancing under the stars. Both silent and live auctions hold surprises and help support the Zoo. Don't wait!!! Zoofari usually sells out in advance. For tickets, call (805) 962-5339 ext. 113 or purchase online.
Early Closure: General admission ticket sales end at 2:30 p.m., membership admission ends at 3:00 p.m., Zoo closes at 3:30 p.m.


Presented by ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
Venue ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens  Website
8/6/14 - August 12th is World Elephant Day!
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On August 12, 2012, the inaugural World Elephant Day was launched to bring attention to the urgent plight of Asian and African elephants. The elephant is loved, revered and respected by people and cultures around the world, yet we balance on the brink of seeing the last of this magnificent creature. Come learn about what organizations like Wildlife Conservation Society and the International Elephant Foundation are doing to help save elephants, and learn more about the Zoo's elephants too. Enjoy giveaways and elephant-related activities while you marvel at these enormous endangered animals.
Presented by ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
Venue ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens  Website
2/14/14 - This Sunday .... Fox Festival at the Zoo
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Both local Channel Island foxes and the Zoo’s new African fennec foxes are highlighted at this event that’s equal parts education and fun. Learn about the Channel Island foxes’ dramatic comeback from a population crash, thanks to conservation efforts, which the Zoo participated in. View the wee fennec foxes with their oversized ears. Fox-fun crafts and keeper talks add to the fun.
Presented by ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
Venue ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens  Website
10/23/13 - Boo at the Zoo -- This Weekend!
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Have a spooktacularly good time as the Zoo transforms for three nights of safe, traffic-free trick-or-treating during this merry-not-too-scary event. Features a Trick & Treat Trail, Boo-Choo-Choo train rides, Creepy Crawly encounters, and much more.
Boo at the Zoo is designed for children ages 2 - 12 accompanied by an adult. Advance ticket purchase is recommended.
Cost: Adults $12, Children (2-12) $10. $1 off for SB Zoo Members. Tickets available now at the Zoo or online. Boo-Choo-Choo tickets priced separately on a first-come, first-served basis at the train station from 5:30 p.m. until they sell out: $4/adults, $3.50/children 2-12. $1 off for SB Zoo Members. Parking for non-members is $5.
Early Closing: the Zoo will close at 3:30 p.m. on all three days of Boo at the Zoo. General admission ticket sales will end at 2:30 p.m., and Zoo Member admission ends at 3:00 p.m.
Presented by ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens
Venue ... Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens  Website



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