Field and Research Projects

Our employees are applying their skills and knowledge while participating in hands-on projects that are saving wildlife at home and around the world.

Humboldt Penguin Consortium

Kansas City Zoo has joined forces with the St. Louis Zoo and the Brookfield Zoo to carry on the very important Penguin Census and the teaching the sustainable harvesting of guano practices.

Wyoming Toad Captive Breeding, Reintroduction, and Field Survey Program

Zoo continues the efforts of the Wyoming Toad Species Survival Program (SSP) that have been underway for several years onsite and in the field to increase their population.

Fresh Water Mussel Propagation and Reintroduction Program

Freshwater mussels are disappearing at an alarming rate throughout North America, where scientists consider over 70 percent of all mussel species to be imperiled. Nearly half of Missouri’s mussels are species of conservation concern.

Panamanian Golden Frog Breeding Program

With the current amphibian extinction crisis sweeping the planet, arguably no other group of animals stands more to gain from zoo conservation than amphibians -- thus the implementation of the Panamanian Golden Frog Breeding Program.

Conservation Lower Zambezi Project

The Kansas City Zoo supports the operations of one Luangwa anti-poaching team, which includes providing food rations, communications, First Aid kits, patrol equipment, transport, and a 24/7 Control Center which monitors patrol teams on difficult or dangerous patrols.

Trumpeter Swan Restoration Project

The Kansas City Zoo’s Waters Edge Team cares for and has successfully breed Trumpeter Swans over the past several years.

Humboldt Penguin Conservation and Research Program

The Humboldt Penguin Consortium helps to not only keep this population of birds safe at the Punta San Juan location, but also helps to monitor the populations from year to year.

Brown Hyena Health Assessment and Distribution Study

The Kansas City Zoo is the only zoo participating in darting and collaring brown hyenas for the project.

Bolivian Amphibian Initiative

The Bolivian Amphibian Initiative, coordinated by Senior Animal Curator, Tim Steinmetz, aids in accessing the aquatic species and environment in and around Lake Titicaca.

Black Mamba Anti-Poaching Initiative

This all-female anti-poaching unit is based out of Balule Nature Reserve in the Greater Kruger National Park, South Africa.

African Elephant Reproductive Conservation Initiative

Headed by Dr. Kirk Suedmeyer, DVM Dipl ACZM, Director of Animal Health, and Elephant Research Physiologist Kari Morfeld, PhD, The Kansas City Zoo has initiated a national project to review the current reproductive  health of all older African elephants held in zoos. 

Polar Bears International Isotope Study

This study exploits new methods but it is hoped that the results will explore how climate change affects foraging success and movement patterns of polar bears, and may provide insight into the decline in polar bear body condition associated with demographic changes and the documented population decline.

Monarch Butterfly Project

The Monarch Butterfly project aims to promote a sustainable cooperation with local species of flora and fauna.

Polar Bear Arctic Ambassador Program and Research Project

Through this partnership, we support Polar Bears International and its efforts to learn about bears in the wild and to teach the rest of the world about the effects of climate change.

Marine Mammal and Pinniped Rescue Project

The Marine Mammal and Pinniped Rescue project helps to support the conservation of wild populations of marine mammals, including California Sea lions, through rescue and rehabilitation, research and education.

The CREATE Project - Corridor Restoration For Animals Threatened And Endangered

A social enterprise focusing on improving wildlife habitat and captive welfare, the Kansas City Zoo has initiated a long-term habitat restoration project in the Kinabatangan rainforest of Borneo.

Eastern Spotted Skunk Distribution and Relative Abundance Assessment

The Kansas City Zoo is participating in the first documented health assessment and disease ecology study of the Eastern spotted skunk, a species in decline throughout the Midwest.
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