When it opened in 1984, the Earlton Zoo became a very popular attraction in Northern Ontario. It was located just north of Earlton, Ontario on 35 acres and offered over 50 species of animals. The Earlton Zoo and the Temiskaming Wildlife Centre no longer exist. The Earlton Zoo closed in 2004 and the Temiskaming Wildlife Center closed in 2005.
Rarely seen North American animals such as timber wolf, lynx, elk and moose could be seen up close. As well, the zoo displayed animals from around the world including tigers, lions and Japanese macaque.
The Zoo also has a refuge area that cared for injured or orphaned wildlife such as moose, calves, bear cubs and beaver kits. While we toured two young moose were being tended to, including the one at the left. As well, two tiny orphaned bear cubs were sleeping soundly in their cage.
The Zoo actively researched hand rearing techniques of these distressed animals and aimed to reintroduce them back to their wild habitat unless circumstances prevented it.
Each year the zoo had on display many young animals born at the zoo. Our tour included baby moose, fallow deer, yak, sheep and Canadian lynx to name but a few.
Young kids will enjoyed the hands-on mini-farm where they fed the animals, took pony rides and pet most of them. Seed dispensers were available where animals were allowed to be fed throughout the zoo.
A new addition to the zoo at the time was the Buffalo Safari. Several times each day you could board the shuttle into the herd of bison. Along the way knowledgeable staff told the history of the bison.
You get a very up-close and personal look at these massive creatures as they come to feed at the side of the tour shuttle.
The largest bison, [pictured at left], weighed in at over 2200 pounds. His size alone made him master of the herd which he proudly showed when they came to feed along the shuttle ride.
The Bison Safari was free with admission to the zoo.
Our family visited the Earlton Zoo at least once or twice a season, definitely a great day-trip for any family. Sadly it is now closed.
In 2010 we made the trek to the Toronto Zoo in Toronto, Ontario. This world class zoo offers over 5,000 animals representing over 500 species. You can see our virtual tour of the zoo below.
If there's a zoo near you be sure to drop by this summer!