Toledo Zoo's Tembo Trail Opens May 18

Posted May 8th, 2012 by Andi Norman  Category: Arts & Entertainment,


Tembo Trail, the Zoo’s innovative new elephant exhibit, opens May 18 — and you’re invited! It’s a party of such ponderous proportions that the celebration lasts three whole days, May 18 – 20.

All weekend long, free with regular Zoo admission, you’ll enjoy fun family activities and live entertainment, along with keeper talks and animal training demos that show how the Zoo blends extraordinary visitor experiences with extraordinary animal care.

Tembo Trail offers nearly limitless enrichment opportunities for the Zoo’s elephants. Internationally recognized elephant expert Alan Roocroft rates Tembo Trail as one of the world’s top elephant exhibits in terms of its use of “vertical space.” This refers to the extensive use of enrichment trees, walls and overhead feeders which encourage the elephants to move, stretch and explore.

The Zoo’s four elephants – Louie, Twiggy, Renee and “little” Lucas – are the biggest news, but Tembo Trail is even more than elephants. It’s a whole new look and feel to the area visitors have known as the Savanna, including lions, rhinos, hippos, meerkats and crocodile.

For the first time May 18 – 20, visitors will see African spotted-necked otters (a new species for the Zoo), plus naked mole rats back on public display for the first time since 2008. Dromedary camels are scheduled to join Tembo Trail in June.

The $15 million Tembo Trail project is possible because of Lucas County’s voters who supported the Zoo’s 2006 capital levy and because of generous capital campaign donors, including The Kresge Foundation, Jonathan F. Orser in memory of his mother Grace Ford Orser, and the Landman-Goldman Foundation. Major sponsor for Tembo Trail’s Grand Opening Weekend (May 18 – 20) is The Andersons.

Information about the weekend’s activities, plus fun facts about the animals of Tembo Trail, is available at

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