New exhibit set to open at Oakland Zoo

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- ABC7 News took a tour of the new California Trail exhibit at the Oakland Zoo, which is expected to open to the public July 12.

Animals on display are ones that were almost extinct like the California condor, or almost moved out of the Golden State like the gray wolf. Other exhibits include grizzly and black bear, mountain lion and bison. Animals being shipped to the zoo include Jaguar and bald eagle.

Wolf expert Darren Minier told ABC7 News: "the north american gray wolf are native to California, but they haven't been in California for almost 100 years."

They were chased out of state by ranchers protecting their herds and dwindling amounts of prey, but they are slowly coming back.

There are two large California condors with a 10-foot wing span. "Condors are so big, they're almost like a mammal. They are a bird, but they share a lot with apex mammals kind of like mountain lions, wolves, bears you know. It's pretty cool," Condor expert Joe Burnette said.

There are about 90 condors in the wild now, but there were fewer than 30 back in the 1980s.

Zoo officials are hoping the new exhibit moves the zoo into an elite new class of wildlife parks along with world-renowned San Diego Zoo.

Sneak peek at new exhibit at Oakland Zoo

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