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June 28, 2023

What's new at Philadelphia Zoo: Walk with lemurs, view red-tailed monkeys, penguin chicks and goat kids

The updated Lemur Island exhibit lets guests inside the habitat. And the kid-friendly SEPTA PZ Express Train has been expanded

Wildlife Philadelphia Zoo
philadelphia zoo lemur island Kory Aversa/Aversa PR

Philadelphia Zoo's updated Lemur Island allows guests to step inside an exhibit featuring ring-tailed and mongoose lemurs.

Much is new at Philadelphia Zoo this summer, including a unique way to see a group of endangered primates.

America's first zoo has updated its Lemur Island exhibit to allow guests to venture inside of the lemur habitat and watch ring-tailed and mongoose lemurs walk past them, without being barred by fences or moats. The last time this experience was offered was back in 2005, according to a zoo spokesperson.

MORE: Cape May Zoo welcomes baby ring-tailed lemur

“Philadelphia Zoo has one of the most diverse collections of lemur species in North America,” said Michael Stern, the zoo's curator of primates and small mammals. “We love seeing the joy on guests’ faces as they enter the experience and come within feet of these lemur families."

Ring-tailed lemurs, known for their black and white striped tails, are native to Madagascar and are considered endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Mongoose lemurs, also native to Madagascar, are considered critically endangered by the IUCN. Male mongoose lemurs grow red fur on their necks, while females grow white fur.

Summer visitors can also spot a few adorable baby animals that have recently made their zoo debuts. Along with sloth bear cubs Kelce and Harper, guests can visit two Humboldt penguin chicks, currently in their burrow in Penguin Point, as well as two Arapawa goat kids, Georgina and Lucas, in the birthing yard at KidZooU.

And for the first time since 1928, the Philadelphia Zoo is housing red-tailed monkeysnative to central Africa. A 10-year-old male, Ahnmom, and a 5-year-old female, Lulu, can be seen in Monkey Junction.

Also new is an updated track on the kid-friendly SEPTA PZ Express Train, which now expands into the Watering Hole beer garden.

Philadelphia Zoo, located at 3400 W. Girard Ave., is open daily from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets can be reserved in advance online.

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