The Zoo is now open! All guests, including Zoo members, must now reserve free, timed tickets prior to visiting.

Review the Zoo’s reopening guidelines and make a reservation

We are excited to welcome you back to the Saint Louis Zoo!  When you are ready to visit, we're more than ready for you! Until then we are happy to continue to #BringTheStlZooToYou for you stay connected to your Zoo. 

Follow us at FacebookTwitter and Instagram and check out our new rotating animal webcams at Live Webcams!

Don't forget our STLZOOm live webinars for school audiences  thanks to our Saint Louis Zoo Educators!

Our staff remain dedicated to the animals in our care. Your support is vital to our future. Please consider making a contribution to our Critical Animal Care Fund

September 08, 2020

A Very Special Ball Python

On July 23, something incredible happened at the Charles H. Hoessle Herpetarium at the Saint Louis Zoo — a ball python laid eggs! That might not sound too thrilling to some, but to our Herpetarium staff it definitely was. This particular female snake is over 50 years old (the oldest snake documented in a Zoo) and has not been with a male in over 15 years! 
 
Ball pythons​, native to central and western Africa, are known to reproduce sexually and asexually, which is called facultative parthenogenesis. Snakes are also known to store sperm for delayed fertilization. Now the question is, which of the two explanations is the reason for the eggs? Without genetic testing, Zoo staff won't know if this ball python reproduced sexually or asexually, but they intend to find out. As the keepers continue to incubate the eggs, they will be sending off samples for genetic testing.

#MyStlZooVisit

Thanks for visiting Clara! We hope you are enjoying kindergarten and can't wait for you to visit again! #MyStlZooVisit

Have you made your reservation yet? The Zoo is now open daily 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. stlzoo.org/zooreservations