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The Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo is currently closed. Stay tuned for details about our Wild Zoo Spring Preview coming in April 2024.

Help the Hellbender

Help The Hellbender (4)Eastern and Midwestern United States

Help the Hellbender is a cooperative conservation effort that works to preserve the endangered hellbender populations in the United States. This project spans across multiple states from Missouri to Georgia to New York. Each state has several conservation projects and educational opportunities all the with purpose of helping the hellbenders.

Help The Hellbender Map

Why do they need our support?

The hellbender species has survived for nearly 2 million years without change. However, habitat loss has caused hellbender populations to decrease rapidly to the point of endangerment in some states. Hellbenders are an indicator species, meaning their presence in a river or stream is an indicator of good water quality. Preserving hellbender populations goes hand-in-hand with protecting and preserving the environment they live in, both very important conservation efforts.

How is the Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo helping?

In 2015, the Zoo began a partnership with Purdue University and the Department of Natural Resources called Help the Hellbender to raise hellbender salamanders, which will eventually be released into their southern Indiana habitat. The hellbenders will be tracked as part of a statewide conservation effort.


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