Meet Exotic Animals at Black Pine

Just under an hour northwest of Fort Wayne is one of the best places in the country to visit if you're an animal lover. Nestled on 18 acres of hills and pine forest is Black Pine Animal Sanctuary in Albion, Indiana. Black Pine is home to over 75 displaced exotic animals. It's not a zoo and doesn't operate as one. Think of it as a forever home for rescued animals. In their own words, "We do not buy, sell, trade, or breed animals, or use them for commercial gain." Black Pine takes in and gives refuge to captive-raised animals that were not meant to be privately-owned domestic pets.

What Makes Black Pine Different

"Are you a zoo?" It is one of the most frequently asked questions of Black Pine. Here is their answer: What makes Black Pine different from a zoo is that the animals that reside here were not acquired for exhibition or breeding. Our residents are not allowed or encouraged to multiply, and we do not seek them out to enhance the "visitor experience."  Most of our residents were born and raised in captivity either as pets or performers.  In many cases the animals have experienced intimate relationships with their human caregivers, which enables visitors to Black Pine to observe them more intimately than most zoo animals.  Most of our residents would not be accepted by zoos because they cannot participate in breeding programs due to lack of records proving the quality of their genetics; or zoos simply do not want or "need" them so will not accept them.  In many cases, Black Pine is an animal's "last chance."  Our animal residents all have names and personal histories that our staff enjoy sharing with visitors to help inform and influence responsible pet ownership and conservation.  The animals enjoy relationships with the staff who care for them and will almost always come up close to see who is visiting.  We will never allow any interaction with potentially dangerous animals, or do anything that would expand the exotic pet trade.  Our knowledgeable, caring volunteer staff are always on hand to answer visitor questions.  We also offer staff-guided tours each day of our regular summer season as well as field trips by appointment.  We strive to provide excellent animal care above and beyond all else.

Black-Pine-Animal-Sanctuary-Parrot

Animals You Can Meet

Here's what you can expect to see on your visit:

  • North American Black Bears
  • Foxes (Arctic and Red)
  • Wolf-Dog Hybrids
  • Primates (Baboons, Velvet Monkeys and others)
  • Birds (Emu and Rhea Americana)
  • Cats (Tigers, Cougars, Bobcats, Servals and others)
  • Reptiles (Pythons, Alligators, Tortoises and others)
  • Others, including Donkeys, Fallow Deer and Pot-Bellied Pigs

Visit The Sanctuary

Black Pine's hours are Thursday through Sunday from 1pm-4pm at General Admission Rates. You can also check out their calendar before you plan your visit to see any events that may be happening that day. This year, Black Pine opened on Saturday, May 6 and will close sometime in October (weather permitting).  

Black-Pine-Animal-Sanctuary-TourOptions to visit include:

General Admission - Tour at your leisure during the open hours of 1-4pm Thursdays-Sundays. Prices range from $10-17.50. This option is great for all ages.

Staff Guided Tour - Learn about the animals and how they are given the care they need in this hour and a half long tour with a knowledgeable guide. Plus, discover exciting stories and new information on this tour. Tour times are Thursday-Sunday at 10am and 12pm. Children under 5 should not attend this tour. Reserving your spot ahead of your visit is strongly recommended. Reserve your time here.

Private Tour - This two-hour long tour allows attendees to participate in a behind the scenes look of the Sanctuary. Learn about the care of animals and get up close and personal. Guests must be at least 10 years old to attend this tour. Pre-registering is necessary, and you must be registered at least 72 hours before the desired tour time. $50 per person. Reserve your spot here.

Black Pine Animal Sanctuary 1426 W. 300 N, Albion, IN 46701
(260) 636-7383
 
This post was originally published in April 2014 and has been updated. Last Updated: July 2023