Fresno Chaffee Zoo’s attendance was up 1.7% in 2014, a new record that was not forecast.
Zoo officials had budgeted for 665,000 in attendance, but more 703,325 went through the gates, said Scott Barton, the zoo’s director.
The number was up from 2013 when the zoo set a record of 691,320 with the opening of Sea Lion Cove and the King Cobra exhibit.
Last year, there were no new significant projects, which was why zoo officials had expected a slight attendance dip, but zoo attendance benefited from the births of four tiger cubs, Barton said.
In the fall, the zoo will open the 13-acre African Adventure exhibit with lions, African elephants, rhinoceroses and other African savanna species.