Toco Toucans are part of The Species Survival Plan (SSP) a cooperative population management and conservation program for selected species at North American zoos and aquariums. Each SSP manages the breeding of a species to maintain a healthy, self-sustaining captive population, both genetically diverse and demographically stable.
Audubon Zoo is home to two pairs of Toco Toucans; one set can be seen by the public while the other pair lives off exhibit in a special breeding area. This pair has successfully bred and raised their chicks in the past, and we hope there will be more chicks!
The toucan chicks are not seen by the public. Instead, they remain behind the scenes until they are mature enough to leave their parents and when the SSP Program coordinator has determined to which Zoo each toucan should be sent. The genetic history of each chick combined with the other toucans that need to be paired will determine their new home and what is best for the Toco Toucan population as a whole.