Conservation Efforts

Conservation Efforts

When Reptile Gardens opened in 1937, it was our founder’s (Earl Brockelsby) goal to entertain and educate our Guests about the animal residents at Reptile Gardens.  While entertaining and educating our
Guests, it’s important that we positively contribute to the future of our animal residents and our community.  We work closely with many major zoos worldwide to promote the survival of different species.  We also do our part to educate the public about important environmental issues that affect us today.


Galapagos Conservancy – Galapagos Conservancy (GC) is dedicated exclusively to the long-term protection of the Galapagos Islands. This single focus allows them to maximize the impact of the financial support of their members, who include individuals and institutions that care deeply about the Galapagos Islands and understand the scientific importance of preserving this extraordinary ecosystem.


Collectively, their members represent the largest source of private funding for Galapagos conservation. Their direct support to on-the-ground research and management has more than doubled since 2004. GC is committed to strengthening local institutions and to creating local capacity to ensure long-term protection of the archipelago.


Idea Wild – Biodiversity is the foundation of human existence and has provided humankind with healthy ecosystems, food, fiber, pharmaceuticals, pollination and peace of mind for thousands of years. Planet earth is now experiencing a loss of biodiversity.

IDEA WILD works to equip, empower and activate the world’s most promising environmental leaders to grow and strengthen the movement to conserve the planet's biodiversity. Our collective future depends on it.


Black Hills Raptor Center – The Black Hills Raptor Center is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the care and conservation of native wildlife and habitat in South Dakota through education, rehabilitation and study. Their purpose is to increase community awareness of native birds through education; to assist injured and orphaned birds through rehabilitation and release; and to work closely with government agencies, wildlife managers and researchers in research and conservation efforts.


Madras Crocodile Bank Trust Center for Herpetology – The Madras Crocodile Bank Trust and Centre for Herpetology (or Croc Bank) was the brain child of the legendary Romulus Whitaker and a handful of like-minded conservation visionaries who began work on the facility in 1976, in a desperate effort to save India’s dwindling crocodilian populations. Today, after more than 30 formidable years of cutting edge science and grassroots education, the Croc Bank remains a world leader in the field of frontline conservation and the preservation of natural landscapes.

The Croc Bank currently consists of a large reptile park near Chennai, Southern India, and several field projects located throughout the subcontinent reaching as far afield as the Nicobar Islands. The zoo sees close to half a million visitors per year making it one of the most popular tourist attractions along the famous East Coast Road.


Turtle Survival Alliance – The Turtle Survival Alliance (TSA) is an action-oriented global partnership that is committed to zero turtle extinctions in the 21st century. The TSA creates breeding programs, including building facilities, for critically endangered freshwater turtles and tortoises; conducts field research; develops conservation plans and puts those plans into action; promotes conservation awareness among local communities; provides support, knowledge, training and resources to conservation partners around the world; and advocates for greater enforcement of wildlife laws.


Gharial Conservation Alliance – The Gharial Conservation Alliance (GCA) is an international organization of individuals in a variety of disciplines, who are dedicated to saving gharials from extinction and ensuring the establishment of sustainable wild populations. Conservation efforts of the GCA range from scientific population surveys, captive breeding and wild restocking programs, to education, awareness, and government lobbying. Several international zoos have become major players in gharial conservation through public education, awareness activities, and fundraising campaigns.


Komodo Dragon SSP Conservation Fund - The sole purpose of KSP is to conduct monitoring activities to determine the population status of Komodo Dragons and recommend appropriate conservation measures to the Indonesian Government. They provide important data in regard to the ecology and survival in the wild of these magnificent reptiles.

 Agumbe Rainforest Research Station - The ARRS is in Someshwara Wildlife Sanctuary and Agumbe Reserve Forest in southwestern India. Their long term mission is to study and conserve rainforests through applied ecological research, outreach programs, and partnerships.



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Sky Dome

Step inside the Sky Dome to experience a warm tropical climate while exploring our indoor jungle filled with exotic and unique flora and fauna. 

Rattlesnake Gulch Funtier Town

Try your hand at gemstone sluicing, go on a 3D safari, or test your aim at the shooting gallery! Our very own old west ghost town has numerous photo opportunities and activities to keep the kids entertained.

Cheyenne's Habitat

Cheyenne the bald eagle has been a permanent resident of Reptile Gardens for 11 years with permission of the US Fish & Wildlife Service.

Maniac's habitat

Maniac is our resident giant saltwater crocodile. At over 16 feet long and1,350pounds, he is one of the largest giant crocodiles in the western hemisphere. If you don't see him at his enclosure inside the SkyDome, make sure to check outside!

Prairie Dog Town

Get down to eye-level with these fuzzy little animals and see firsthand what life is like in a typical prairie dog town!

Methuselah's Playground

Methuselah was a giant Galapagos Tortoise weighing in at over 600 pounds, and a long time resident of Reptile Gardens. His memory lives on at this playground featuring a bronze statue of Methuselah himself. 

Snake Show stage

Get up-close-and-personal with our snake ambassadors in this family-friendly snake handling show.

Gator Show stage

Dozens of Alligators, Crocodiles, and Caimans and one keeper...what could go wrong? Separate fact from fiction in this educational, family-friendly show and get a chance to pet Fluffy, our baby gator!

Bird Show stage

Interact with birds from around the world at the Bird Show, where they love to show off their beauty and intelligence. 

Gift Shop

Carrying a wide variety of Reptile Gardens souvenirs as well as educational books for every age and a variety of stunning rocks, minerals, and fossils from all over the world.

Green Parrot Cafe

Hungry? Refuel with buffalo burgers, The Maniac burger, Black Mamba Shakes, Indian Tacos, and more!

Giant Tortoise

Don't miss this photo opportunity! Get up-close and personal with these friendly giants who love to have their neck scratched and are great with kids. 

Tortuga Falls

Take a stroll through this meditative garden, gaze into our turtle and koi pond, listen to the waterfalls, and don't miss Darwin the Kookaburra! 

Walking Garden

We're about more than just Reptiles! Our outdoor gardens are beauty to be seen as they change throughout the season and year after year. 

Living Wall

This vertical garden is a wall of color that grows and changes through the Summer season creating striking patterns and unique portraits as it grows. 

Pet A Python

At the end of every snake show, you will get the opportunity to pet a python and chat with our knowledgeable show presenters. Don't forget your camera!