Species Survival Plan


What is a Species Survival Plan (SSP)?

A Species Survival Plan (SSP) is a program for selected species in zoos and aquariums that manages the breeding of a species in order to maintain a healthy and self-sustaining population that is both genetically diverse and demographically stable. According to the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), most SSP species are endangered or threatened in the wild, and have the interest of qualified professionals with time to dedicate toward their conservation. Also, SSP species are often “flagship species,” well-known animals that arouse strong feelings in the public for their preservation and the protection of their habitat. Examples include the giant panda, California condor and Western lowland gorilla.

The Fort Worth Zoo currently holds 108 SSP species. Zoo staff members serve as species coordinators for several of these national conservation programs, including bongo, king vulture, painted terrapin, Panamanian golden frog and Puerto Rican crested toad. Additionally, Zoo staff members serve as small population management, nutrition and veterinary advisors to numerous SSPs.

SSP Species at the Zoo

Abyssinian ground hornbill African lion
African pancake tortoise African penguin
African pygmy goose African serval
Andean condor Anoa
Aruba Island rattlesnake Asian elephant
Black-breasted leaf turtle Blue-bellied roller
Blue-throated macaw Bobcat
Bonobo Brazilian spectacled owl
Burmese star tortoise Burrowing owl
Bushmaster Caribbean flamingo
Cheetah Chilean flamingo
Chimpanzee Chinese crocodile lizard
Chinese three-striped box turtle Common waterbuck
Crested porcupine Crested wood partridge
Demoiselle crane Eastern black-and-white colobus
Eastern bongo Eastern indigo snake
Eastern massasauga rattlesnake Egyptian tortoise
Fiji Island banded iguana Flat-tailed Madagascar tortoise
Giant leaf-tailed gecko Golden lion tamarin
Golden-headed lion tamarin Greater one-horned rhinoceros
Green tree monitor Hamerkop
Henkel’s leaf-tailed gecko Hippopotamus
Hyacinth macaw Jaguar
King vulture Kinkajou
Komodo dragon Kori bustard
Lake Victoria cichlid Laughing kookaburra
Lesser flamingo Lesser kudu
Lesser Madagascar hedgehog tenrec Louisiana pine snake
Malayan argus pheasant Malayan tiger
Mandrill Marbled teal
Mexican lance-headed rattlesnake Mexican red-kneed tarantula
North American river otter Nubian ibex
Ocelot Orangutan
Painted terrapin Panamanian golden frog
Plain’s zebra Plush-crested jay
Prehensile-tailed porcupine Prehensile-tailed skink
Puerto Rican crested toad Puma
Radiated tortoise Red-crowned crane
Red kangaroo Red river hog
Red wolf Reticulated giraffe
Ring-tailed lemur Rio Fuerte beaded lizard
River stingray Roadrunner
Rockhopper penguin Roseate spoonbill
Roti Island snake-necked turtle Saddle-billed stork
San Esteban Island chuckwalla Scarlet ibis
Seahorse Slender-tailed meerkat
Southern crested screamer Southern tamandua
Sumatran orangutan Sunbittern
Sunda wrinkled hornbill Swift fox
Tawny frogmouth Tiger
Toco toucan Violet turaco
Wattled crane West African crowned crane
Western lowland gorilla White-cheeked gibbon
White-headed buffalo weaver White-naped crane
White-nosed coati Yellow-billed stork
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