Exciting Changes Ahead!

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With your help, we can make exciting changes!

Help us bring okapis to the Sacramento Zoo AND improve and expand our lions’ living space.

Animal welfare and conservation education are at the forefront of everything we do at the Sacramento Zoo. It is with these very important considerations in mind, that we announce some exciting improvements and new species coming soon to the Sacramento Zoo – with YOUR help!

The Sacramento Zoo’s resident lion pair: Kamau and Cleo, will be receiving a renovation and addition to their exhibit space! The adjacent former tiger exhibit will be incorporated into the lions’ exhibit, allowing the lions to enjoy nearly double the space they currently live in. The updated and enhanced exhibit will incorporate a glass front, so zoo visitors can enjoy a truly nose-to-nose experience with the king (and queen) of beasts!

Resident lion pair Cleo (left) and Kamau (right)
Lion Exhibit Update
Graphic representation of lion exhibit update







That’s right, for the first time ever, the Sacramento Zoo is home to meerkats! Five meerkats from the Brevard Zoo in Florida came to the zoo this year.

Meerkat clan, photo courtesy of LA Zoo

Meerkats are small, social mammals that are relatives of the mongoose. This diurnal (active during the daytime) species is adapted to life in the Kalahari Desert of southern Africa, making them exceptionally well-suited for the hot Sacramento days and cool nights, as well as the relatively temperate climate of the region in winter.

These engaging animals are already a zoo-fan favorite. Get ready for some fun!

Meerkats are social animals, living in large groups called “clans.” They are burrowing animals that emerge from their beds in the morning to spend the day sunbathing, grooming and hunting. Meerkats have an excellent sense of smell, making it easy for them to find the small insects that comprise the majority of their diet.

Read more about the zoo’s newest clan here!


Okapi Mom and Baby
Okapi mother and offspring, photo courtesy of LA Zoo

Another brand-new species to the Sacramento Zoo will be okapi. Also known as the “forest giraffe,” okapis are the only living relatives of the giraffe. However, okapis have a very distinguishing feature – their bottom halves are striped black-and-white, similar to the markings of a zebra! The Endangered okapis are found in the dense rainforests of central Africa and are generally solitary animals.

You will see extensive construction beginning this fall, as the zoo prepares for the arrival of okapi. The Sacramento Zoo will be the only zoo in Northern California to house this amazing animal! The new okapi exhibit will be located in what is now known as the summer camp lawn area, across from the red panda exhibit, and adjacent to Kampala Café.

Stay tuned for updates and check back on your next visit to the zoo for progress on this exciting new exhibit!


We can’t improve the living space for our lions or bring these amazing new species to the Sacramento Zoo without YOUR help! Please donate to our Exciting Changes Fund TODAY.


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Okapi Exhibit Rendering


Snow leopard cub Coconut 

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