Celebrating 125 Years

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WCS Celebrates 125 Years

We are marking our 125th anniversary on April 26, 2020, with heavy hearts as our world suffers from a pandemic tearing apart our communities. With much hope, we will continue to use our mission—to save wildlife and wild places—to help prevent future pandemics. In the coming months as the world heals, we plan to mark our history with additional activities.

Founded as the New York Zoological Society
On April 26, 1895

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Check out a digital timeline of our 125 years.

Read our Wild View blog for more historical stories.

As we mark our anniversary:

We celebrate over a century of successes at saving wildlife and wild places, powered by the expertise and science in our zoos, aquarium, and global conservation program.

Our 125-year legacy positions us perfectly to take on the world’s most pressing conservation challenges—the zoonotic pandemic crisis, the decline in the world’s biodiversity, and the climate crisis—with urgent and bold action.

We focus on protecting the planet’s most important, ecologically intact places with the greatest biodiversity and resilience to climate change.

Throughout our history, we have harnessed the skills of our colleagues working in our global field program with those in our zoos and aquarium to evolve into a powerful force working to save wildlife and wild places.

We have a long record of conservation achievements. Yet today, our work is far from done.

We Need You

As we mark 125 years, pressing threats remain—zoonotic pandemics, climate change, global biodiversity loss. We need your help to secure a future worth celebrating.

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Join more than one million wildlife lovers working to save the Earth's most treasured and threatened species.

Help WCS prevent future pandemics

Commercial wildlife trade is directly linked to causing pandemics like COVID-19. The need to shut down such trade of mammal and birds for human consumption has never been more urgent.