kids with backpacks participating in a program

Individual & Family Programs

Cosley Zoo offers many exciting programs for animal lovers of every age!

Cosley Zoo offers virtual and in-person programs for individuals of all ages and families. Information regarding program dates, times, fees, and registration is available for viewing in the latest Wheaton Park District program guide and at eventbrite.com.

Register for Programs on Eventbrite.com

For more information, please contact us.

Great Backyard Bird Count

Each February, zoo staff train Junior Zookeepers in backyard bird identification and encourage them to participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count (gbbc.birdcount.org). Participation is quick and simple, requiring individuals to monitor bird populations anywhere in the world, including their own backyards, for a minimum of 15 minutes, and then submit the results online. This data provides scientists with valuable information about wild bird populations. The next Great Backyard Bird Count is February 18-21, 2022.

Cosley Zoo offers training sessions for individuals and families who would like to participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count. Check back later this year for more information about the 2022 training sessions.

For questions about the program, please e-mail education@cosleyzoo.org.

Become a Frog Watch USA™ Volunteer

frogwatchDo you have an interest in Frogs and Toads? Become a FrogWatch Volunteer!

You do not have to be a frog or toad expert to be a FrogWatch USA volunteer! All you need is:

Cosley Zoo’s Frogwatch USA chapter offers public training sessions each spring. Check back later this year for more information about the 2022 training sessions. For questions about the program, please e-mail frogwatchcosleyzoo@wheatonparks.org.

FrogWatch USA™

FrogWatch Cosley Zoo is a local chapter of FrogWatch USA, The Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ flagship citizen science program that invites individuals and families to learn about the wetlands in their communities and help conserve amphibians by reporting the calls of local frogs and toads.

FrogWatch USA volunteers play an important role in amphibian conservation. Over 2,000 amphibian species are currently threatened with extinction and many more are experiencing sharp population declines. This alarming trend may be a sign of deteriorating wetland health because amphibians can serve as indicator species.

To learn more about amphibian conservation and FrogWatch USA™ visit aza.org.

Zookeeper for a Day

Do you want to be a zookeeper? Come spend part of the day and work side by side with one of Cosley Zoo’s Animal Care staff. Assist with routine cleaning and care, provide enrichment to the animals, and be a part of a training demonstration. Participants will also receive a certificate, special souvenir, and photo.

Details:

  • Available year-round from 10A-1P
  • Ages: 14+
  • Cost: $95/person. 10% discount for Wild Bunch Plus and Keeper Club member levels.

To sign up, please contact the Cosley Zoo Education Department at 630.665.5534 or education@cosleyzoo.org.

Morning Chores

Have you ever wanted to help take care of animals on a farm? Well, now is your chance to get a first-hand experience. Join the staff as you help clean and bed stalls, feed some farm animals, and try your hand at grooming.

Details:

  • Available year-round from 7:15-9:15A
  • Ages: 8-adult. Ages 8-13 must be accompanied by a paying adult.
  • Cost: $40/person. 10% discount for Wild Bunch Plus and Keeper Club member levels.

To sign up, please contact the Cosley Zoo Education Department at 630.665.5534 or education@cosleyzoo.org.

Coyote Connection

Go behind the scenes with Cosley Zoo zookeepers to visit our coyote up close and observe a coyote training session. Learn about the important role coyotes play in our environment and how humans and coyotes can safely coexist.

  • Available daily 1-1:30P; must be checked in by 12:45P.
  • Sign up in the Wild Side Gift Shop during your zoo visit, or call 630.665.5534 to make a reservation. First-come, first-served; maximum of 6 participants in the same household each day.

Cost: $18 per person; 10% discount for Wild Bunch Plus and Keeper Club member levels.

Special Events

For a list of upcoming special events, please visit events page.

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Bobcat photo at top of page by Edward Durbin 

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