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Two of Zoo Atlanta’s popular behind-the-scenes programs have returned. Wild Encounters with African elephants and Aldabra tortoises are now available.

In the African elephant Wild Encounter, visitors have the opportunity to meet and feed an elephant in a program joined by Kelly or Tara, the female members of the herd at Zoo Atlanta. The program also features behind-the-scenes facts about the Zoo’s state-of-the-art Zambezi Elephant Center and information on the threats facing African elephants in the wild and steps all visitors can take to aid in their conservation. The encounter is available on Mondays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays at 1 p.m. Reservations are required and must be made in advance on Zoo Atlanta cannot accommodate encounters on a walk-up basis.

The Aldabra tortoise Wild Encounter offers a chance for an up-close-and-personal interaction and feeding with Shuffles, Corky or Patches, the three Aldabra tortoises at Zoo Atlanta. Among the Zoo’s largest reptiles and the longest-lived members of its animal population – none believed to be younger than around 60, yet still considered middle-aged – the Aldabra tortoises represent one of the world’s largest tortoise species and are found in the wild only on a single group of islands in the Indian Ocean. The encounter is available on Mondays, Fridays, and Saturdays at 1:45 p.m. As with the African elephant Wild Encounter, Aldabra tortoise Wild Encounter reservations must be made online in advance.

Visit for more information on Wild Encounters programs and requirements.


Rachel Davis, Director of Communications
404.624.2812 – office
404.309.2238 – cell

Gavin Johnson, Public Relations and Communications Specialist
404.624.5980 – office

About Zoo Atlanta
A proud accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), the gold standard for animal care and welfare, Zoo Atlanta has a mission to save wildlife and their habitats through conservation, research, education, and engaging experiences. The Zoo is home to more than 1,000 animals representing more than 200 species from around the world, many of them endangered or critically endangered. Highlights include giant pandas, including Ya Lun and Xi Lun, the only giant panda twins in the U.S.; one of North America’s largest zoological populations of great apes; and a global center of excellence for the care and study of reptiles and amphibians. Recent transformations include the all-new African Savanna, featuring new and expanded habitats for African elephants, giraffes, zebras, ostriches, warthogs, meerkats and rhinos, and Savanna Hall, a state-of-the-art special event destination in the newly restored historic former home of the Atlanta Cyclorama. For more information, visit

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