Bird fact sheets
Bird of Paradise
Eagle, Steller's Sea-eagle
Lory & Lorikeet
At the Zoo:
- Hummingbird House
- Children's Zoo
- Australasian Aviaries
- Birds of Prey
- Owens Aviary
- Parker Aviary
- Scripps Aviary
- Arctic Aviary
- Avian Propagation Center (not open to the public)
At the Safari Park:
San Diego Zoo Global's Bird Collection
Birds can fascinate and delight us with their colorful feathers, nesting habitats, flying or swimming skills, and musical songs. These winged wonders have been an important part of San Diego Zoo Global since its inception. We have one of the most comprehensive bird collections in the world (almost 400 species and subspecies and over 3,500 individual birds), housed at the San Diego Zoo and the San Diego Zoo Safari Park facilities. This includes a number of endangered and incredibly unique and rare species. We are a leader in collaborating internationally with bird breeding programs, raising and providing birds to send to zoo facilities around the world to help with their breeding programs. Below are some highlights of our collection:
Great blue turaco
At the San Diego Zoo
The Zoo has the largest collection of bird species in the United States, with several species that are rare at zoo facilities, including the great blue turaco, from West Africa, and the Blyth's tragopan, the only breeding pair in captivity in the world. Rare species that are also endangered include the Micronesian kingfisher, Bali mynah, Andean condor, and Congo peafowl, all part of Species Survival Programs (SSPs) administered by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.
The San Diego Zoo is also home to species that are rare or extinct in the wild. We have the only breeding pair of harpy eagles in all of North America and Europe and the only Talaud red-and-blue lories in U.S. zoos. The Zoo and Park are the only two facilities in the U.S. to house the endangered kagu, native to New Caledonia. And the Zoo is one of just three facilities in the world used as a quarantine staging area for the eventual return of a bird extinct in the wild, the Guam rail, to its native Guam.
Abysinnian ground hornbill
At the San Diego Zoo Safari Park
The Park has the largest and most comprehensive collection of hornbills, storks, and pelicans in the zoo world. We are the only facility in North America to have Dalmatian pelicans and to have bred them as well as pink-backed pelicans and great white pelicans. Our hornbill and stork collection, and many other species, are considered irreplaceable. We also have the largest off-exhibit bird-breeding facility—134 aviaries—of any zoo in North America.
The Park has enjoyed a number of firsts in bird breeding worldwide for a variety of hornbills and the African open-billed stork. We were also the first facility in North America to successfully breed yellow-casqued, black-casqued, Abysinnian ground and long-tailed hornbills, as well as the California condor, southern bald ibis, crested coua, Storm's stork, and two species of bee-eaters.
We are proud to house four of the six flamingo species, all breeding flocks, and the unique-in-captivity shoebill stork and great blue turaco. We support in situ bird projects in Indonesia, Thailand, Colombia, Mexico, and South Africa and are involved in a kiwi reproduction study and California condor genetic and behavioral studies.
San Diego Zoo Global is part of endangered bird recovery programs for the San Clemente loggerhead shrike, California condors and Andean condors, Guam rail, light-footed clapper rail, and harpy eagle. The Hawaii Endangered Bird Conservation Program is a unique conservation partnership composed of the San Diego Zoo, the U.S. Department of the Interior, the State of Hawaii, and Hawaii's private landowners. Together we are working to recover 22 species of endangered Hawaiian forest birds. This program clearly demonstrates the significant role captive propagation can play in worldwide conservation efforts as well as providing a model for a collaborative, multidisciplinary approach to endangered species recovery. The Zoo has received awards from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for our California Condor Recovery Program and our participation in the Hawaii Endangered Bird Conservation Program.