BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — The BREC Baton Rouge Zoo opened a new West African exhibit.

A walk in the jungle at the BREC Baton Rouge Zoo ‘West African Expedition’ exhibit ceremony featured underwater views of pygmy hippos and black and white Colobus monkeys.

“Dealing with West Africa, we’re trying to build up the culture and talk about the different things that make up culture, language, music, art, and really to tell a full story. So people feel they’ve gone to West Africa,” BREC Baton Rouge Zoo Director, Jim Fleshman said.

All are surrounded by the ‘circle of life’ caring for endangered animals and creating a more dynamic safari experience for tourists, families, and friends.

Fleshman said by this time next year, people will be celebrating a new entry and additional improvements for the “West African Expedition.”

“Giving the citizens what they want and utilizing their money. So we’re trying to make sure that we give them a big wow, big bang for their money,” Fleshman said.

BREC said phase one of renovation is expected to be complete by Spring 2024.