About us – A worldwide network | International Zoo Services
About us – A worldwide network

About us – A worldwide network

International Zoo Services is a consultancy group for zoological collections worldwide, specialized in the relocation of animals. It was founded in 1985 by John Rens, former deputy-director of Wassenaar Zoo, The Netherlands. This zoo was famous for their breeding results with bonobos, gorillas, cheetahs, and birds of prey.

Our organization is supplying and transporting animals to zoos worldwide; we do not have animals in stock but our team is maintaining a databank of all surplus and wanted species of thousands of zoos and recognized private breeding-farms. This worldwide network can assist you to locate your wanted species and to find new homes for your surplus-specimens.

John Rens, founder of International Zoo Services

Our services

Location-service: how we work

We could help you locate a particular animal that you wish to include in your collection or to find a new home for your surplus specimens. The new home for your surplus specimens will naturally be subject to your approval.

Transport and documentation-service: work for specialists!

International Zoo Services can assist your organization with relevant documentation. Our team can coordinate animal transports by truck, boat or airplane; this includes taking care of crates or other suitable containers. On various occasions we have chartered a complete airplane for an animal transport.

Breeding-loan and donations: especially for EAZA or AZA -members

International Zoo Services also put them in direct contact with each other. This service is often used when a zoo desires an animal on a breeding-loan terms or wishes to make a donation.


In case you want to exchange your surplus specimen for specimens that you wish to include in your collection, we can be of assistance to you. We will locate a zoo that is interested in your surplus-animals and provide you with the specimen that you are looking for on an exchange-base.

Special projects: donations from government to government.

Whenever the relocation of an animal involves extremely rare species that are being donated by governmental institutions; International Zoo Services knows all the ins-and-outs of the laws and practices of that particular country and can secure the support of the governmental authorities involved.

Some of our projects

The best way to illustrate the work of International Zoo Services is perhaps to present you with a survey of some of the favourite projects that have been completed over the past years. See here below a selection:

A large group of penguins, including King penguins, Rock hopper-penguins, Magelhaen-peguins and Gentoo-penguins were located in South-America and transported to a new zoo in Spain.

A pair of giraffes was transported from Europe to Brazil, needless to say, a highly complicated project.

A pair of rare King-cheetahs left Africa under our care to their new home in a special breeding-facility in the Middle East.

Giant tortoises are very attractive to the public. A large group of these huge reptiles from a special breeding-centre were delivered to several zoos in Europe and Asia.

Several Asian elephants accompanied by some Mahouts were imported into Germany, coming from different South-East Asian countries.

A pair of Gang-gang cockatoos were located, a highly desired and subsequently rarely offered species.

One of our first projects took place during the eighties when Eastern and Western Europe were still separated. We managed the transfer of a male Bongo from Czechoslovakia to a zoo in West Germany where it participated in a very successful breeding program.

A pair of clouded leopards was sent from a private breeding-center in the U.S.A to a zoo in Tokyo.

We located a pair of Manatees, of a governmental authority in South-America, which was willing to offer them on permanent loan to a zoo in Spain; they were transported by using a chartered plane.

We located a zoo in the Netherlands that was willing to donate a male Indian rhinoceros to a zoo in South-East Asia to complete a pair. International Zoo Services provided the crate and arranged for its transport.

White lions are rarely seen in zoos. We relocated a white lion from a private collection in Africa to a governmental zoo in the U.S.A.

Another large transport took place in the 90's when a group of 65 animals were transferred from several different zoos in Europe to a Night-safari in Southeast Asia.

In 2017 a new home was found for an adult Orangutan in China. Transport from Spain was successful and with minimum stress for the animal.

Nice groups of small-clawed otter from Europe were relocated to excellent destinations in China and U.S.A. during 2018.

A couple of White tigers from has found their new home in a big zoo in Thailand.

Groups of fur seals from South-America have been shipped zoos and aquariums in China, Indonesia, Bahrain, Egypt and many other countries.