Henry  Doorly Zoo    
                 By:  Nathaniel                                              

  A few summers ago, I had a zoo pass, and I went there about every other day. Although I was there so often, I never realized how much time, work, effort, and money was put into it. Believe it or not, the zoo was founded in 1894! As Riverview Park, that is.

  This is a photo of Riverview Park in the 1800's. Riverview Park was a relaxing place in the community where there are lots of paths, ponds, trees, animals, and attractions.

  In 1963, Margeret Hitchcock Doorly made an enormous $750,000 donation to the zoo. $750,000 is an extremely large amount of money now. Just imagine how much money that was back then! Mrs. Doorly also asked that the zoo was named after her late husband, Henry Doorly. That is why the omaha zoo we know today is still called the Henry Doorly Zoo.

  In 1977, the Cat Complex became part of the zoo family. There you can see big cats from tigers to lions, leopards to jaguars.

  Completed in 1987, my personal favorite is the Wild Kingdom Pavillion. Based of of the Wild Kingdom TV show, it's home to all sorts of animals, including fish, reptiles, amphibians, mammals, and invertebrates. I even got to touch a snake there!

  In 1988, construction began on the $15 million Lied Jungle. The Lied Jungle is one of 3 sites selected for the Black-Footed Ferret breeding program. There they have a variety of bats, reptiles, amphibians, and mammals. My personal favorite is the recently added bat nesting grounds.

   In 1993-1995, the Walter and Suzanne Scott Kingdoms of the Seas Aquarium was built, completed, and opened. It had more than 1.6 million visitors! The aquarium is also home to a 70-foot shark tunnel, which contains 900,000 gallons of water!(My favorite!)

  In 1999-2002, the world's largest desert dome was being constructed. In 2002, it was opened to over 1.5 million people. The desert dome is extremely realistic to real deserts such as the Sahara.

   On the Skyfari, you can see the zoo from a whole new perspective. Opened to the public in 2009, the Skyfari circles over the whole zoo. You can decide if you want to cross trip or a round trip. Once me and my grandma dropped our tickets from our booth!

  I'm sure everyone is excited to see what the zoo has in store for us next!

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