Minnesota Zoo Media Contact

If you are a member of the press, please contact:Kelly Lessard
Public Relations
Minnesota Zoo
13000 Zoo Boulevard
Apple Valley, MN 55124
952.431.9217 direct
952.431.9300 fax
kelly.lessard@state.mn.us

Minnesota Zoo Launches BioDiscovery Project

Zoo begins documenting onsite native wildlife; will later implement citizen science opportunities

Apple Valley, MINN – September 30, 2013 – The Minnesota Zoo has always showcased the amazing diversity of wildlife from around the world, and now, with the launch of its new BioDiscovery Project, it will document the wealth of native wildlife living on the undeveloped portion of the Zoo grounds.

The Minnesota Zoo has always showcased the amazing diversity of wildlife from around the world, and now, with the launch of its new BioDiscovery Project, it will document the wealth of native wildlife living on the undeveloped portion of the Zoo grounds. Toad_BioDiscoveryProject2013

“By sharing our discoveries with the public, we hope to inspire people to get outdoors and explore the incredible diversity of native wildlife that we have in our local communities,” said Dr. Tara Harris, the Minnesota Zoo’s director of conservation. “We feel that connecting with wildlife on a personal level will motivate people to take an active role in wildlife conservation.”

So far, the Minnesota Zoo has documented many species of birds, amphibians, reptiles, insects, and mammals as part of the BioDiscovery Project. Although many species were known to make their homes on the Zoo grounds, some – like the southern red-backed vole, meadow jumping mouse, spotted spreadwing damselfly, calico pennant dragonfly, rose-breasted grosbeak, red-eyed vireo, wood frog, and boreal chorus frog – have now been documented onsite for the very first time. As the program progresses, the Zoo expects to find many more species.

Are you interested in exploring with the Zoo and learning more about native wildlife? The Minnesota Zoo will be developing citizen science opportunities through the BioDiscovery Project, which will allow the public to participate. Stay connected to the Zoo’s blog and Facebook pages for updates.

The Minnesota Zoo is located in Apple Valley, just minutes south of Mall of America. For more information, call 952.431.9500 or visit mnzoo.org. The Minnesota Zoo is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and an institutional member of the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA).