City of Joburg

Johannesburg City Parks and Zoo


Johannesburg Zoo


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With their sharp teeth and fearsome claws bears inspire fear; but though they are dangerous animals they also have a playful side.

Brown bears have a superb sense of smellBrown bears have a superb sense of smellTHE Johannesburg Zoo is home to two species of bear; the Brown bear and the Spectacle bear.

Brown bears

Brown bears have moderate sight and hearing, but their large noses show that their sense of smell is superb. They are omnivores – meaning they eat plants and animals. At the Zoo, the Brown bears eat veggies, lettuce, fish, meat, dog biscuits, apples and oranges. In the wild they survive on plants, berries and other fruit; grass, insects, young deer and livestock.

There are two Brown bears at the Zoo; a hand-reared female called Trinkie, and Luanda the male, who was rescued from the Luanda Zoo during the Angolan war in 1994.

Spectacle bears

Spectacles bears get their name from the pale markings, which resemble spectacles, around their eyes. They are small dark bears that like to climb and walk around their enclosure, and they love to swim. At the Zoo, they eat fed veggies, fish, meat, dog biscuits and fruit.