A Texas zoo is up for sale, along with all 500 of its animals, for $6m (£4.5m). Bayou Wildlife Zoo is home to a number of endangered species, including a white rhino, banteng cattle, ring-tailed lemurs and Bactrian camels, but after more than a year on the market has still not found a buyer.
The 80-acre zoo, located south east of Houston, also boasts giraffes, zebras and alligators among its star attractions, as well as a petting zoo and pony rides for younger visitors. Around 10 employees look after the 500 animals and birds, of 60 different species, and roughly 90,000 visitors each year go on a tram tour to see the animals.
According to realtor.com, the 80-year-old owner is selling the zoo so he can retire. The property was originally listed for $7m but has not been snapped up - the online listing has now been live for just over a year. Several potential buyers have reportedly stepped forward so far but struggled to find traditional financing for the project.
While it costs about $6,000 to feed the animals each month, the zoo turns a big profit – around $1 million in sales each year, a more than 30% profit margin.
For $6m, the buyer will get a 10,800 sqft barndominium including its own apartment, jeeps, trucks and other ranch equipment, seven trams, six barns, 10 ponds, a covered seating area to accommodate 400 people, and 3,500 feet of waterfront overlooking Dickinson Bayou.
The listing suggests buying the zoo either to continue the successful 31-year business, or as a private ranch/zoo, but owner Clint Wolston told realtor.com he would ideally like the buyer to keep the animals safe while continuing to run it as a public attraction.