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Buttonwood Park Zoo, owned and operated by the City of New Bedford, features animals and 30 exhibits, including: elephants, bison, mountain lions, bears, eagles, seals, otters, and farm animals. BPZ is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and has been called "one of the finest small zoos in the United States" by that organization.
Accreditation means that the Buttonwood Park Zoo meets the high standards of the AZA for exhibit quality, animal care, educational programs and conservation projects. There are only about 200 AZA accredited zoos and aquariums in the United States, out of the more than 1,000 animal exhibitors licensed by the United States Department of Agriculture. The AZA is a leader in global wildlife conservation and is dedicated to providing excellent care for animals and educating the public about wildlife, habits and conservation.