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Today's nonprofit nationally accredited Zoo has a rich history in conservation. The
stewards of the Naples Zoo have long supported this ethic. In 1904, founder Dr. Henry Nehrling (pictured at left) urged
"It is high time to protect and preserve what is still left in Florida."
In the 1950s, Julius Fleischmann rescued and expanded Nehrling's
forgotten trees and planted new species to create a tropical garden attraction. In 1969, zoo founders Lawrence and Nancy Tetzlaff (shown below at the Toledo
Zoo) introduced wild animals into the garden. For decades, they taught programs on the need for conservation through film footage
they'd taken on four continents. These programs included domestic concerns
like the mid-1960s presentation "The Vanishing Everglades" and
international issues in programs like "Brightest East Africa."