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A zoo can be an awesome place to see animals first hand and learn about what they eat, their habits, environment, and all sorts of other interesting facts about animals. Another name for a zoo is zoological garden.

Today zoos are becoming better and better places for animals. In the past some zoos were somewhat cruel to animals. Placing animals in environments they were not suited for and often not keeping the animal's best interest in mind. However, today many zoos do wonderful work in animal research and take great care of their animals.

Monkey at the zoo
Photo by Ducksters

Some good things that many Zoos do today include:

Today's modern zoos house animals in enclosures that are similar to the animal's natural habitat. This can include buildings made for nocturnal animals where they are bright at night, so the animals can sleep, and dark during the day, so zoo visitors can see the animals moving about. Also, climates are controlled in some zoo enclosures for animals like penguins and polar bears. Many zoos have great open spaces as well where animals may graze together. Some zoos have an area where you can take a mini-safari or ride around in a truck or bus to hopefully see the animals up close.

Perhaps the most famous zoo is the San Diego Zoo in Southern California. Many modern zoo practices were pioneered at the San Diego Zoo. The largest zoo in number of animals is the Bronx Zoo with over 6000 animals. The largest zoo in land size is the North Carolina Zoo with 535 acres.

Bear at the zoo
Photo by Ducksters
Seeing an elephant, giraffe, lion, polar bear, penguins, seals, or other incredible creatures at the zoo can be an amazing experience. Be sure to check out your local zoo and get the opportunity to see some awesome animals and learn more about nature.

Another great place to see animals, similar to a zoo, is at an aquarium. Most states have an aquarium where they display all sorts of fish and some sea mammals.

More on endangered species:
Amphibians in Danger
Endangered Animals
How Animals Become Extinct
Wildlife Conservation

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