Berlin Zoo- 19th Century and Now

On August 1, 1844 the first zoo opened in Germany. Named the Zoologischer Garten, it was funded by the King of Prussia who donated 850 animals from his own menagerie.

The idea to create a public zoo had been the idea of Alexander von Humboldt and Heinrich Lichtenstein, a zoologist. Peter Lenne was hired to design the park which allows open habitat for many of the animals to roam without bars.

Located in Berlin, it is now one of the most frequented zoos in the world, renowned not only for hosting approximately 17,000 animals (1500 different species) , but for the lush greenery.

*all photos are personal property from my last visit*

Published in: on June 12, 2011 at 1:08 pm  Comments (21)  
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21 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. It looks lovely! I was always amazed by the nobles who collected animals like that, I wonder what made them think it was a good idea? Michael Jackson certainly had precedent for his own collection 😉

    The most depressing zoo I was ever at was the Ueno Zoo in Tokyo. The animals were kept in very small areas, or housed indoors in small cages. I don’t know if they’ve done anything to improve it since I was there many years ago, but I felt so sorry for the animals there.

  2. In ancient times, menageries were a sign of power, a demonstration of the rulers reach and with it his wealth. Today they are a sign of irresponsible wealth (remember these are wild animals) and while I appreciate the work zoos do to maintain viable species genetic pools and educate the public, the fact that they are needed at all is sad indeed.

  3. DD,

    It is a breathtaking park.

    The zoo in Toyko sounds terrible. I know zoos in general are controversial, but at least the animals in Berlin seemed well cared for.

  4. Ralfast, I understand your misgivings. When it comes to zoos, I can understand both sides of the argument.

    Ideally, yes- they definitely belong in their natural habitat. No zoo, no matter how good it may be, could ever compare. But while there are zoos, I must admit I do like to visit them, and hope that they are doing some good for the future of animals.

  5. But we don’t live in an ideal world…. 😦

  6. This indeed looks like a lovely zoo.

  7. I know what you mean Ralfast. I have mixed emotions about zoos for the same reasons. As you say, they do a lot of good in protecting species, especially endangered ones that have been hunted to the brink of extinction. I also think that simply by being able to see these magnificent creatures with which we share the planet, it makes them real, tangible, and not simply an abstract concept or pictures in a book. When people can see them up close like that, I like to think it gives people a greater appreciation for them, and a greater desire to protect them in the wild.

    What I dislike is people like Michael Jackson who collect them as pets for their own selfish reasons. They are wild animals, they are not pets. (you can imagine how I feel about people who cross wolves and dogs for pets)

  8. Damn you for living in a cooler place than me.

  9. Thanks, Abby! Glad you thingk so. 🙂

  10. Haystack,

    hahahahahhahaha!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That comment made my morning. hee hee! 🙂

  11. Very nice photos! I have not been to the zoo here as yet. Each time we tried it was either closing or all the park house in the area was full (could take the train but we always wanted to continue doing something afterward…once were home we are home).

    But I do like the setting. From the photos it look as it the animals have a lot of room to roam.

    Happy Pfingsten!

  12. Thank you, Vanessa!

    You too. 🙂

    The zoo does close rather early. I think about 5pm.

  13. Wow! How simply gorgeous! I don’t have a lot of places I’d like to go see in real life, but this has just made the list. This place is either absolutely breathtaking or you are one heck of a photographer!! 🙂

  14. Ah Jessica,

    Thank you very much.

    I hate to brag, but must admit it is the latter. My photographic skills go far beyond “heck” into the extraordinary. In fact, my talent for cutting things out of the frame (such as the tops of peoples’ heads) is legendary.


  15. Wow, beautiful!!!!! Apparently seeing the Bronx Zoo is NOT the final word in zoos–at all!!!!!!!!!!! 🙂 Lovely 🙂

  16. *giggles*

    Yes, Sputs. There is a world outside of NY.

    Shocking, I know! 😉

  17. I have *heard* there’s a world outside of NYC. I just didn’t know if those rumors were true.

    Hahaha! 🙂 🙂 *ducks*

  18. The rumors are not true, Sputs.

    I am a fragment of your mad imagination.

  19. […] zoo in which allows many of the animals to roam without bars. Here is a link from Gypsyscarlett “Berlin Zoo- 19th Century and Now” giving insight along with […]

  20. I am looking for anyone who might have heard of or known Albert Jentsch who looked after the big cats during Hitler’s time as leader of Germany. I am friends with his daughter who married an american soldier and moved to the United States after the war. She is writing a book and will appreciate any stories about the lions and tigers that
    were in the zoo in the 1930’s.

  21. Hi Jan,

    Sorry. I’m not familiar with Albert Jentsch or the the taking care of the big cats during that time. However, your friend might find some things by googling on the internet. Also, she might wish to contact the Berlin zoo itself, either by email or phone. They might be able to give her general information and point her towards some books on the subject.

    Good luck!

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