Buffalo Zoo preparing to break ground on new Amphibian & Reptile Center – named after former Zoo President, Donna Fernandes

March 22, 2018

Written By

Mary Friona Celani

The Buffalo Zoo is getting ready to break ground on an exhibit they’ve been raising money for – since 2015.  It’s an exhibit that will be named in honor of Donna Fernandes, who served as the Zoo’s President for sixteen years, and she loved every moment of it. Fernandes retired last year, in part, to spend more time with her family.



The Donna M. Fernandes Amphibian and Reptile Center is a 3.7 million dollar project, which started in 2015. After successfully securing the funds needed, the A.R.C is now ready to break ground and the old reptile house is officially closed until construction is complete.

Originally built in 1942 by Marlin Perkins, the Zoo’s Reptile House was deemed the finest in the nation, when it opened. With its infrastructure and animal exhibits dating back to the 1940s, it is time for some much needed upgrades. Renovations will include a new roof, heating and ventilation systems, several new and renovated naturalist exhibits, and interactive education elements.





About Me

Welcome to Totally Buffalo! My name is Mary Friona-Celani and I am the creator of this site! After spending 20 years in the Buffalo media, I moved on to focus on my beautiful family. Now, the time has come for a new project. I was ready for something new. Something mine.
I am born and raised in WNY and my pride runs deep. My husband, Scott and I are very happy to be raising our four daughters here.






Submit a Comment