Due to the emergency declaration made by Governor Reynolds, Blank Park Zoo closed at noon on March 17 and will be closed through April 30, 2020. All events and activities are cancelled through this time.
Blank Park Zoo is closely monitoring the developments of the global outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19). We are following updates from the World Health Organization (WHO), the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as well as other federal, state and local authorities including Polk County Emergency Management, Iowa Department of Public Health, and the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.
We will reassess our operational status based on how the situation progresses.
Please know that while we are closed to the public, we will continue to provide excellent care for the over 2,000 animals that live at Blank Park Zoo. We also encourage the public to check our social media channels as we provide updates from the Zoo.
Great Cats and COVID-19
Many have inquired about the story of tigers testing positive for COVID-19 at the Bronx Zoo and are asking what Blank Park Zoo is doing. Currently, the great cats that live at Blank Park Zoo are in good health and show no symptoms.
Since before this crisis started, we have been reviewing and updating our protocols. Our protocols for primates, bats, ferrets, otters and now great cats include keepers wearing PPE (personal protection equipment) during meal preparation, animal interaction and training situations. We have increased social distancing protocols, decreased the amount of training interaction time and limited the number of employees who access the building to necessary staff only.
We are not preemptively testing lions and tigers for COVID-19. Testing would require anesthetizing the great cat, which carries risks, and at this time the animals are healthy and do not have symptoms.
Please see www.blankparkzoo.com/coronavirus for further updates.