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History of Beijing Zoo

Beijing Zoo Index | History | Construction
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Beijing Zoo was originally the imperial manor in the Ming Dynasty (1368 - 1644). During that period, an imperial mansion called the Garden of Happiness and Friendship constructed for Prince Kang stood here.

Plants were cultivated and animals were raised here during the Qing Dynasty (1644 - 1911). In the 18th century, the zoo was known as the Sanbeizi Gardens, supposedly named after the third son of Emperor Kangxi, Prince Cheng Yin. Another explanation is that Sanbeizi refereed to the Qing courtier Fu Kang an. and during the Qing, part of the Sanbeizi Gardens called the Garden of Continuity (Jiyuan) became the private property of an official in the Bureau of Palace Affairs. In 1906, during the reign of Emperor Guangxu, the park area became an agricultural experimental farm and a zoo.

Under the successive rule of the Northern Warlords, the Japanese and the Kuomintang, the park became increasingly desolate. The only elephant died in 1937, and the Japanese, under the pretext of protecting themselves against air raids, poisoned the remaining lions, tigers and leopards. On the eve of the founding of New China in 1949, the park housed only 12 monkeys, two parrots and a blind emu. The park was reopened to the public in 1950, and on April 10, 1955 formally named the Beijing Zoo.

The zoo has developed rapidly and by 1987 it covered an area of over 40,000 square meters. Bears, elephants, pandas, lions, tigers, songbirds, hippopotamuses, rhinoceroses, antelopes and giraffes were brought in the late 1950s, and a gorilla cage, leaf-monkey cage and aquarium house, was opened, containing specimens of over 100 species of reptiles from all over the world, including crocodiles and pythons.

After the liberation, it was reconstructed and was known as the West Suburb Park. And in 1955, the name was changed to Beijing Zoo.

At present, the zoo houses over 7,000 creatures of 600 different species, including the giant panda, red-crowned crane and Pere Davids deer-all unique to China-as well as the African giraffe, rhinoceros, chimpanzee and antelope; American continent; wild ox from Europe; and elephant and gibbon from India.


Beijing Tour Routes Includes Beijing Zoo
BD-3. Tiananmen Square, Lama Temple, Confucius, Beijing Zoo
BD-13. Fragrant Hill, Botanical Garden and Beijing Zoo
BST-3. Beijing Hutong and Zoo bus tour
BF-3. Zoo, Beijing Aquarium, China Science & Technology Museum
BH-2. 4 nights 5 days Beijing tour

BH-3. 5 nights 6 days Beijing tour
BH-4. 6 nights 7 days Beijing tour
BK-2. 3 days Beijing tour
BK-5. 6 days Beijing tour
BK-6. 7 days Beijing tour

 
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