More Info


More Info


Barn Cam
Platform Cam

More Info

Unique Ways for Saving Wildlife


The Houston Zoo saves animals in the wild by partnering with like-minded programs and organizations. We recognize that protecting our natural world is a collective task, and we look for every opportunity to strengthen our impact. We support long-term solutions that promote harmony between animals and people. We partner with the following organizations that work to strengthen progress in the conservation world as a whole.

Joel Sartore’s PhotoArk



All donations will go directly to the Photo Ark and are tax-deductible.

The Story

Joel Sartore has been a National Geographic contributing photographer for more than 20 years. Even though he loves to see animals in the wild, Joel is a strong advocate for zoos and aquariums, and admires their ability to inspire people to care about the natural world.

Photo of a Houston Zoo Clouded Leopard taken by Joel Sartore and projected onto the Vatican.
Photo of a Houston Zoo Clouded Leopard taken by Joel Sartore and projected onto the Vatican.

Over the past eleven years, he has visited more than 300 zoos and captured photographs of more than 6,500 different species for a project he calls The Photo Ark. His goal for this project is to use still photographs and some video to document at least one of each of the 12,000+ species in zoos and aquariums over the next 10-15 years.

Houston Zoo sifaka photo taken by Joel Sartore is projected onto the Empire State Building. Photo by Joshua Brott/Obscura Digital.
Houston Zoo sifaka photo taken by Joel Sartore is projected onto the Empire State Building. Photo by Joshua Brott/Obscura Digital.

The portraits in The Photo Ark are done on black and white backgrounds so that the viewer can look each animal directly in the eye and quickly see that these creatures contain beauty, grace and intelligence. Clean backgrounds not only emphasize the individual’s intricate details, but also equalize the sizes of the different animals so that a tiger beetle looks to be the same size as a tiger, and a snail is every bit as amazing as an orangutan. This process stresses the equal value of all living things.

Video: Joel Sartore at TEDxDeExtinction

Joel Sartore, A photographer’s life from Joel Sartore on Vimeo.

Joel has seen first-hand that people will only save the things they love and they definitely won’t save what they don’t know exists. Essentially, the Photo Ark is a unique kind of zoo where the world’s biodiversity looks you in the eye to ask for help. For many of the species shown, even those listed as endangered, there is still time to save them. Please donate here to help us save animals from extinction.


Image copyright Joel Sartore, all rights reserved.

Joel Sartore is an author, speaker, conservationist, photojournalist and fellow of the National Geographic Society. To see more, visit Joel Sartore’s Photo Ark.

Emerging Wildlife Conservation Leaders (EWCL)


An initiative that brings together 20 new, emerging leaders in the wildlife conservation field for capacity-building and intense training in campaign development and skills.

How the Zoo is helping EWCL:

  • Held EWCL courses at the Houston Zoo in 2013.
  • Provide funding and expertise for EWCL program.

How you can help:

If you are interested in strengthening your conservation understanding consider applying for this course.  EWCL requires applicants to have at least 3 years’ experience in the wildlife conservation field, with at least 15 years in the profession ahead of them. More information on how to apply is here.

Human-Wildlife Conflict Collaboration (HWCC)


An initiative that provides training to transform conflict in wildlife conservation efforts to create harmonious and sustainable solutions for people and wildlife. HWCC’s conflict transformation approach has led to reductions in poaching and wildlife trafficking.

How the Zoo is helping HWCC:

  • Staff assists HWCC with planning as a member of the steering committee.
  • Staff assists HWCC with graphic design.
  • Provide funding for our conservation partners to participate in HWCC training.

How you can help:

  • A donation of $7 can help save an elephant from being poached. Donate today.  All donations will go directly to HWCC and are tax deductible.
  • Friend HWCC on Facebook to stay informed and share their success!
  • If you or anyone you know is interested in taking a Conservation Conflict Transformation (CCT) capacity building workshop visit HWCC’s website to sign up.