Lehigh Valley Zoo
November 24, 2021
|(Schnecksville, PA) – Lehigh Valley Zoo is excited to announce its recent re-accreditation by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), maintaining its status as one of 242 AZA-accredited facilities and 14 AZA-certified related facility members throughout the United States and 12 other countries. LV Zoo is one of 22 facilities to earn re-accreditation this year, an accomplishment it has now achieved four times since 2005.
This past August, the Zoo underwent a rigorous inspection process to ensure it is not only meeting, but also exceeding the high AZA standards in animal welfare, guest engagement, education and conservation.
According to AZA, the accreditation process includes a detailed application and a meticulous, on-site, multiple-day inspection by an independent team of trained zoological professionals. The inspecting team observes all aspects of the facility’s operation, including animal welfare and well-being; veterinary care; keeper training; safety for visitors, staff, and animals; educational programs; conservation efforts; financial stability; risk management; governance; and guest services. Accreditation is required every five years for member institutions.
“The communities where these 22 zoos and aquariums are located should be proud their local aquarium, zoo or nature center is among the best zoological facilities in the world,” said AZA President and CEO Dan Ashe. “The process to receive AZA accreditation is rigorous, and continues to include ever-increasing standards to ensure that the animals’ best interests are always first and foremost. We are excited and proud to have these top-notch zoos and aquariums as AZA members.”
Located within the scenic 1,100-acre Trexler Nature Preserve in Schnecksville, Pa., LV Zoo is home to nearly 300 animals representing more than 125 species – from African Penguins to Zebras. The Zoo hosts more than 200,000 guests annually and offers hundreds of educational programs, camps for all ages and family-friendly events, making it one of the most vibrant educational and cultural institutions in the Greater Lehigh Valley region. Open to the public year-round, the Zoo is operated by the Lehigh Valley Zoological Society, a private, non-profit organization.
“There are approximately 2,800 licensed animal exhibitors across the United States, but less than 10% of them meet the rigorous standards of the AZA accreditation,” said Amanda Shurr, President and CEO of the LV Zoo. “It takes the entire Zoo team working extremely hard to make this happen and I am very proud of our team’s commitment to not only meet, but exceed these standards. We work hard every day to ensure that our animals are receiving the very best care and our guests have the best experience they can, and this accreditation is a testament to those efforts.”
The Zoo is proud to continue to be a resource for the Lehigh Valley, representing the “gold standard” of AZA.
“Lehigh County is thrilled to learn, after a vigorous and thorough inspection audit, that the prestigious Association of Zoos and Aquariums has reaccredited Lehigh Valley Zoo,” said Rick Molchany, Director of General Services, County of Lehigh. “This is an accomplishment that places the animal husbandry, medical planning and conservation efforts on par with the best conservation efforts across the top zoos worldwide.”
Currently operating under winter hours, LV Zoo is open for daytime admission Wednesday through Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Additionally, the Zoo is in the midst of hosting its eight-annual Winter Light Spectacular, presented by Service Electric and sponsored by T-Mobile, through Jan. 1, 2022. For a full schedule or to purchase tickets, please visit www.winterlightspectacular.com.
# # #
Founded in 1924, the Association of Zoos and Aquariums is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the advancement of zoos and aquariums in the areas of conservation, animal welfare, education, science, and recreation. AZA is the accrediting body for the top zoos and aquariums in the United States and 12 other countries. Look for the AZA accreditation logo whenever you visit a zoo or aquarium as your assurance that you are supporting a facility dedicated to providing excellent care for animals, a great experience for you, and a better future for all living things. The AZA is a leader in saving species and your link to helping animals all over the world. To learn more, visit www.aza.org.
# # #
As a member-supported non-profit organization, Lehigh Valley Zoological Society was founded in 2004, but it has been treasured community landmark for centuries. Located in the Lehigh Valley’s Trexler Game Preserve, we have educated and entertained more than five million people. Accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), the Lehigh Valley Zoo hosts year-round, family-friendly events and activities, educational programs, and camps. Through a mission to create a safe, engaging and enlightening wildlife experience for guests of all ages, the Zoo demonstrates leadership in the cultural, scientific and conservation communities. To learn more about Lehigh Valley Zoo, we invite you to visit our website, www.lvzoo.org, or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.