|No. of animals||~400|
|No. of species||44|
Aimed for children, the zoo is located at Oberseestrasse nearby
History and facilities
Knie's Kinderzoo was built by the architect Wolfgang Behles and was inaugurated on 10 June 1962 by the brothers Fredy and Rolf Knie senior, representing the fifth generation of the Knie's Circus family. On 15 February 1963 the first birth of an Asian elephant in Switzerland was announced: Sahib-Fridolin was the son of the elephants Ceylon and Siam. The baby elephant is reared by elephant expert and animal trainer Josef Hack with the bottle because Ceylon had no milk and died three months after giving birth. The dolphins Sindbad and Skipper became a further attraction on 19 June 1965; they were the first trained dolphins from Florida ever to be shown in an inland European country. On 4 August birth of the second Asian elephant Madura, a female, was celebrated. Her mother was Java. Madura's father Siam is considered as the most successful breeding bull in captivity: Father of 2 Asian elephants in Rapperswil and 12 elephants in Paris, where he was admired in the Natural History Museum in 2000. On 25 July 1970 the first permanent
In 2000 the renewed elephant facility with bath, waterfall, clay wallows, scratching posts, and an equestrian center for visitors was opened. That same year, the zoo launched its website. Besides, the new ship for children was opened. 2001 saw the launch of the zoo slogan, literally animals up close. In the jubilee year 2002 Parrot flight demonstrations became an additional attraction in the Otarium, as well as the camel riding along with elephant and pony rides, and the grounds newly created sites Katta Island and Hyacinth Macaw opened. On 9 April, the newborn giraffe bull of mother Luana and father Kimali was christened Rivaldo by
The zoo got much more green and colorful by a greening concept that was implemented at 16 critical points and continued by 2010 in a second stage, and the entrance area was renewed. Dining facilities were further extended, and the wheelchair area in the Otarium. 2012 was under the motto 50 years: a parrot air show was added to the program, and Capybara, a mammal and the largest living rodent in the world became a further attraction. In September 2013 a charity walk collected funds for the new Elephant park Himmapan. To promote the close contact with the animals, the zoo introduced zookeeper ground accompaniments. The facility of the popular petting with African dwarf goats, Vietnamese pot-bellied pigs, chickens and sheep was doubled. Species, among them Maras, Engadine sheep and Racka sheep, Smew and goldeneye and Tyrolean chickens became further residents of the zoo – a total of 44 species with around 400 animals. On the world giraffe's day on 21 June 2014, Massamba and Makwetu were born. On 7 March 2015 the elephant park Himmapan and the Thai gastronomy Himmapan Lodge opened, and the cheetah and penguin plants were presented to the public. In 2016 the zoo presented its new education concept by learning in a playful manner interesting facts about the elephants, the cheetahs and the penguins. The new home for lemurs is inaugurated, and Himmapan became the new home of all elephants of the Circus Knie in 2016.
Knie's Kinderzoo particularly aims at children (Kinder in German) and belongs to the Swiss National
In 2014/16 the zoo renewed and expanded its facilities. The Himmapan elephant park was the largest project in the zoo's history, and comprises 6,500 square metres (69,965 sq ft), including dining facilities on a rock construction for 300 guests operating all over the year. Launched during the 2013 season, it was completed in March 2015. The old elephant facilities have been rebuilt as habitats specially designed for the particular needs of the zoo's cheetah and penguin species.
The old facilities have been the elephant's home since 1999; Knie’s Kinderzoo plans to build a centrally located botanical area with vegetation that evokes the ecosystem of dry savannah to emulate an African grassland environment. Right next to it, there will be a section of landscape resembling the Pacific coast of Chile. The habitat environments shall meet the particular needs of a colony of
- "Entwicklung, Meilensteine, Geschichte Knies Kinderzoo, Rapperswil 1962 – 2015" (PDF) (in German). Knies Kinderzoo. March 2016. Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 May 2016. Retrieved 9 May 2016.
- "New facilities" (in German). Knies Kinderzoo. Retrieved 9 May 2016.
- "History". Knies Kinderzoo. Retrieved 9 May 2016.
- Birth of two giraffes on 29 April 2009 Archived 13 July 2009 at the Wayback Machine (in German)
- Knie's Kinderzoo: Attractions Archived 31 May 2009 at the Wayback Machine (in German)
- Dina Wyler (3 June 2016). "Keine Liebe in Knies Elefantenherde: Ein Bulle steht unter Erwartungsdruck" (in German). Limmattaler Zeitung. Retrieved 3 June 2016.