“The zoo is someplace where it’s fun to watch people not on their phones all the time. You have a restaurant and look around nowadays— the entire families are on phone. And I guess you know that that’s really the basis of our preschool is getting kids outside. So they spend 50 to 70% of their day outside and learning through nature. If it’s raining, hot, snowing—whatever it is—they’re outdoors. And you know, the stats show that kids nowadays under 10 are spending eight to 10 hours a day in front of a screen, whether that be a computer, an iPad, a TV or a phone, and less than seven minutes a week outside with unstructured play just outside playing and learning and exploring…In our schools— really a throwback to the yesteryear when your parents told you to get out of the house and come home when the street lights come on. You learn how to negotiate with your friends and assess safety when you’re playing in the woods. And those kind of things as a young child and kids nowadays are not getting. That they’re just glued to screens and games and TV.” — Tim Morrow, CEO of the San Antonio Zoo

In Episode 206 of District of Conservation, Gabriella speaks with San Antonio Zoo’s CEO Tim Morrow. Tim began his tenure as CEO in 2014. Before his current role, he spent almost 20 years at SeaWorld Park and Entertainment. Prior to that, he oversaw Fiesta Texas as part of the management team.

They discuss Tim’s background, the zoo’s history, how zoos play a role in global conservation efforts, misconceptions about zoos today, and much more.

Here’s more about the zoo: San Antonio Zoo®, operated by San Antonio Zoological Society, is a non-profit organization committed to securing a future for wildlife. Through its passion and expertise in animal care, conservation, and education, the zoo’s mission is to inspire its community to love, engage with, act for and protect animals and the places they live. The zoo welcomes more than a million visitors each year and is open year-round.

Connect with the zoo online and follow them on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter.

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Photo Credit: Image by Pexels from Pixabay


  • Gabriella Hoffman

    Gabriella Hoffman is a Media Strategist and Award-Winning Outdoor Writer. She hosts the "District of Conservation" podcast and CFACT's original YouTube series "Conservation Nation." Learn more about her work at www.gabriellahoffman.com