In 1774, King Charles III founds the Royal Menagerie Madrid in Retiro Park. This Casa de Fieras is the second oldest zoo in the world, after the one in Vienna. However, in 1972, the animals have been moved to new zoo exhibits, designed by Javier Carvajal Ferrer (1968-1970), and by architect and sculptor Jose Maria Subirachs. Read more!
In 1892, banker Martí Codolar sells his private animal collection, built from 1865 on, to the city of Barcelona. The zoo, with veterinarian and taxidermist Francesc Darder as its first director, is founded in that year on only 2 hectares of the location of the World Fair 1888. Barcelona zoo takes over a number of the fair's buildings. In the beginning, animals, whatever their size, are kept in equally sized compartments of cages, or in barred enclosures. It is set up as scientific zoo giving wildlife conservation a high priority. Read more!