What’s New 2017-06-21T17:38:01+00:00

What’s New

June 2017: Family Nature Club Debuts

Looking to get your family out to play in nature? Not sure where to start? Join our Family Nature Club to explore and discover the wonders of nature.

Why Play in Nature?

It encourages families to spend quality time together and helps strengthen family bonds
It fosters an appreciation for nature and the desire to preserve it
It supports child development (intellectual, emotional, social, physical)
It encourages creativity and problem solving
It enhances cognitive ability
It increases physical activity

Families are invited to join zoo staff for nature activities at the zoo or excursions to local natural areas.

All families are welcome. We’d like to extend a special invitation to families with individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders and other similar conditions who’d like to spend more time together and experience the benefits of nature play.

Summer Family Nature Club Schedule

Sunday, June 11 10-11A at Cosley Zoo
Sunday, June 25 10-11A at Cosley Zoo
Sunday, July 9 10-11A at Lincoln Marsh Natural Area
Sunday, July 23 10-11A at Lincoln Marsh Natural Area
Sunday, August 13 10-11A location TBA

Sign Up

Cosley Zoo is proud to offer this amazing opportunity free of charge thanks to funding by the Disney Conservation Fund, through a collaboration with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.

Diedra, Guernsey dairy cow

June 2017: Cosley Zoo welcomes Diedra, Guernsey dairy cow

Deidra is almost three years old and came to Cosley Zoo from a cattle breeder who specializes in Guernseys. This breed is known for producing a high-quality milk containing above-average levels of butterfat and protein. Be sure to stop by and visit Deidra!

March 2017: Cosley Zoo welcomes Buttercup, the Nubian Goat

Please help us welcome Buttercup, our newest Nubian Goat! Buttercup came to Cosley Zoo from a farm in central Illinois, where she was formerly a show goat. This four-year old doe (female goat) is easily distinguished from her new herd-mates by the large white patches on either side of her body. She is very friendly and often comes right up to the fence to greet visitors. We are excited that Buttercup has joined our zoo family.

franklinJanuary 2017: Cosley Zoo welcomes Franklin the llama

The newest member of Cosley Zoo’s “herd” is Franklin, a seven-month-old cria (young llama) who came to Cosley Zoo from a llama breeder in Iowa. He is settling in nicely to his new home. Visitors can see Franklin either in his barn stall or in the domestic animal yards just north of the barn.

September 2016: Cosley Zoo receives Nature Play grant

Cosley Zoo has been awarded a $5,000 “Nature Play Begins at Your Zoo & Aquarium” grant from the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) with support from the Disney Conservation Fund. These grants are presented to AZA-accredited zoos and aquariums to encourage family nature play and conservation education. Cosley Zoo will use the grant for its new “Nature Play for All” project, helping individuals and families on the autism spectrum receive the benefits of nature play.

September 2016: Cosley Zoo Welcomes New Animals

New to Cosley Zoo this fall are an Eastern Chipmunk, a Nine-banded Armadillo, and a French Lop Rabbit!

Alvin the Chipmunk comes to Cosley Zoo from Oakbrook Terrace Park District’s Lakeview Nature Center. Alvin has impaired vision, but has been adeptly maneuvering around in his new surroundings. Look for Alvin in the Wild Side Gift Shop.

Dig, the Nine-banded Armadillo, came to Cosley Zoo from Arkansas in July. Dig resides behind the scenes, and will be a future animal ambassador for the zoo.

Belle, a French Lop Rabbit, is another future animal ambassador. The French Lop is the largest breed of lop rabbit, weighing 10-14 pounds as an adult. Look for Belle in the rabbit yard or the rabbit building.

August 2016: Coins for Conservation

Cosley Zoo’s conservation efforts don’t stop at our own five shady acres.

As one of the 233 accredited facilities of the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA), Cosley Zoo contributes to AZA SAFE (Saving Animals from Extinction), an initiative that’s part of AZA’s 2,700-plus field conservation projects in over 115 countries.

AZA SAFE focuses on ten endangered species, and starting August 17, 2016, you can donate directly to three of them at the Coins for Conservation kiosk just past the zoo’s entrance.

Support the cheetah, whooping crane, and vaquita, and help save a local species, too: the Blanding’s Turtle. Your donations go to work across the globe and right here in DuPage County.

Turn that change in your pocket into change in the world!

April 2016: Barnyard Bedtime Stories

Cosley Zoo’s education staff introduced “Barnyard Bedtime Stories”, a new program for families. Participants wear their pajamas and bring their teddy bears to keep them company as they hear animal-themed stories, make a craft, have a snack, and say goodnight to the farm animals before going home to sleep. We plan to offer this program periodically throughout the year, so be sure to check the Wheaton Park District program guide for information on our next session.

March 2016: Meet our New Birds


House Finch


American Robin

Cosley Zoo welcomes some new arrivals to our aviary (bird habitat) this year! A House Finch and an American Robin joined the exhibit in mid-March. The Robin and Finch have been busy the past few weeks exploring their new home. Both of these birds sustained wing injuries in the wild and were brought to a wildlife rehabilitation facility. As a result of their injuries they have limited flight capability which means they are unable to survive in the wild. However, they are a perfect fit for Cosley Zoo where we will provide them with a lifelong home.

Male House Finches have a bright reddish orange color on their head, throat, and chest while the females have no red. Male and female Robins look very similar, with the exception of the male’s head being a little bit darker in color.