It’s that time of year when many zoos in North America expand their operating hours.    Check your favorite zoo’s web site for details.   Here are a couple of zoos that expanded their hours on the first of March.


  • Denver Zoo Summer Hours  9am – 6pm Daily (gates close at 5pm)
  • Sedgwick County Zoo – 8:30am – 5pm  – Members get in at 8am.
  • Columbus Zoo is now open till 5pm.  They will start opening earlier in April.

More will expand their hours between Memorial Day (May 30th, 2016) and Labor Day (September 5th, 2016). Let me know if your favorite zoo is open longer during the summer.

The San Diego Zoo is open till 9pm during the summer and evenings are a great time to visit.   I visited there last summer and it was so nice to go after work.

I’m a big fan of zoos that allow members to arrive even earlier than the normal hours.  Sedgwick County Zoo ( and the Denver Zoo ( both allow members in 30 minutes early during parts of the year.   Again check their websites or call ahead to confirm.

This early morning member time is a great time for photographing the zoo animals.   The light is usually very nice.   The animals that are out are usually very active and curious.  Note that not all the animals will be out first thing in the morning.   Some of them like to sleep in.    But the best part is that there are no crowds (parking is a breeze).    You can get in and by the time the gates open for everyone, you are well into the zoo and have time alone with your favorite animals to get those great shots.

Let’s enjoy the expanded summer hours at the zoo.