Rosamond Gifford Zoo

Syracuse Travel Blog

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A sleepy fennec fox.
    For four years, I had been meaning to take a to the Rosamond Gifford Zoo, but just never got around to it until this summer. A few friends and I decided it was time to go check it out, and piled into the car and headed off. The zoo is only around 15 minutes away from Syracuse University, so it was very convenient for us.
    Admission into the zoo is at most $6.50 (for 16-61) and they have a student discount that knocks off $2, so we were pretty thrilled with that. The zoo is laid out very nicely, and it's pretty easy to stay on track and keep heading in the right direction (no walking around in circles here). You first head into the "U.
This was right before Meghan made the mandril smile at her.
S.S. Antiquities" to check out amazing reptiles, amphibians and marine life, as well as some insects. Then, it's into the aviary where the birds are allowed to roam freely. It's pretty cool, walking along the path and motmot flies right in front of you. They have two tucans there, which are pretty cool, and are kept in a large enclosed area (which is really for the visitors' safety).
    From the aviary, it's into Adaptations, where visitors can watch two-toed sloths climb along the ceiling, take a close up look at naked mole rats (if you've never seen them before, they're pretty ugly), bats, seahorses, clouded leopards and otters. The sloths were pretty interesting to watch...I have seen them in the wild in Costa Rica, but there, they weren't really moving very much.
The king of the jungle (or in this case, the zoo).
At the zoo, they were climbing around, hanging off the ceiling, and swinging upside-down. It was pretty strange...haha.
    After Adaptations, you head into what was definitely my favorite exhibit. In the "Social Animals" exhibit, visitors can smile at mandrils (they will actually smile back if you do it the right way), check out adorable meercats, as well as lemurs (both grey and black), laugh at the golden lion tamarins and the squirrel monkeys, and watch the lions bask in the sun. Every animal has a great set up and all seem to be enjoying themselves.
    As you leave the Social Animals exhibit, there are a bunch of hands on activities and play areas for the children who come to the zoo...including ropes to swing on, and a fun flip-up-the-stomach-flap-on-the-picture-and-see-what-this-animal-eats area.
Brown pandas are adorable.
Now that you're outside, there are a lot of other things to look at...including duck ponds, flamingos, large birds (hawks, vultures, eagles, etc.) and it gets a bit less crowded as the indoor exhibits (everyone seems to crowd around the mandrils). Moving away from the water fowl pools and the other enclosed fowl areas, you head off to see some larger mammals, such as bison, a red fox, elephants, yaks, brown pandas, tigers, caribou, snow leopards and much more.
    One of the best things I found with the Rosamond Gifford Zoo is that every single animal in every exhibit is labeled. If there are crickets in with a snake, there's a sign letting you know the crickets' latin name and other information about them. It's a really organized and wonderful zoo...and definitely something fun to do while in Syracuse, New York.
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A sleepy fennec fox.
A sleepy fennec fox.
This was right before Meghan made …
This was right before Meghan made…
The king of the jungle (or in this…
The king of the jungle (or in thi…
Brown pandas are adorable.
Brown pandas are adorable.
The queens...or princesses?
The queens...or princesses?
Snuggling lemurs.
Snuggling lemurs.
Hanging around outside the monkey …
Hanging around outside the monkey…
A colorful mandril butt.
A colorful mandril butt.
Me and Meghan...we had to wait in …
Me and Meghan...we had to wait in…
Best sign at the zoo.
Best sign at the zoo.
Syracuse Sights & Attractions review
With over 600 animals, and an admission price well under $10 (with a student discount of under $5), the Rosamond Gifford Zoo in Syracuse, NY is defini… read entire review
Syracuse
photo by: smhirsch