One of the first zoos in Kazakhstan, the Almaty Zoo was established in 1937 with two objectives -the research and development, as well as the possibility to show people exotic animals without leaving the country. The Almaty Zoo is truly rich and has about 2781 animals and 310 different species. If you happen to be in Almaty and have some spare time, come and meet the inhabitants of the Almaty Zoo.
In order to surprise the Almaty residents from the beginning, animals were brought from the zoos all over the Soviet Union. Hyenas, jackals, caracals, and foxes were sent from the Ashgabat zoo. A polar bear, reindeers, and raccoons came from the Leningrad Zoo. Emu, bison and nilgau antelopes arrived from the Moscow Zoo. Antelopes of pharynx, wildebeest and common eland travelled from the Askania-Nova reserve, that is famous all over the world for breeding African animals. Only in the year of its foundation, the collection of animals reached nearly 70 species. In the 1990s, the zoo experienced hard times - electricity interruptions, lack of animal food, etc. It was planned to close the zoo, but its staff managed to cope with difficulties.
Snow leopards have always been considered the pride and symbol of the city, and the Almaty Zoo too. Often, they were rescued from the cruel hands of hunters and poachers. One of the snow leopards that was named Alchik became a real star in the Soviet Union. It was very hard and dangerous to shoot this real wild snow leopards in the documentary films, so documentarists decided to take Alchik. He was shot in several documentaries and feature films.
Nowadays, the Almaty Zoo consists of six sectors: predatory mammals, birds, ungulates, aquarium, exotarium, and primates. The total number of animals represented in them is constantly changing. The Aquarium sector is considered the favorite among visitors because of the rare and unique species of fish. Due to the excellent work and dedication of employees, the Almaty Zoo has great importance for the country and owns magnificent collections of healthy and well-treated animals. Its population of birds of prey is considered one of the richest in the world: many years ago, the birds of prey from the Almaty Zoo were transferred to many other zoos around the world.
The zoo is open every day, and you can meet the inhabitants of the Almaty zoo in the wintertime: from 10:00 to 18:00, and in the summertime: from 9:00 to 21:00. Prices: Tickets for adults cost 700 tenges (about 1.65 euro), while the entrance for children under five years is free of charge, and from 6 to 12 years old, the price is 200 tenges (about 50 euro cents).
Cover photo © Credits to iStock/Dorogoy
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