The historical studbook for giant anteaters in North America contains 583 specimens (214.285.76). There were 112 living specimens (53.57.3) housed in 46 institutions as of 01 March 2013.
The first recorded importation of the giant anteater in North America was in 1880. The Philadelphia Zoo received their first female giant anteater on May 6, 1880. Unfortunately, many of the giant anteaters imported into North American collections faired poorly. It was not for sixty years that any giant anteaters survived beyond two years in captivity. The first recorded captive birth known to the studbook occurred at Detroit Zoo on April 12, 1951.
Under the auspices of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), this species’ status is currently designated as a yellow Species Survival Plan (SSP).
After logging into the AZA website, members can view the Breeding and Transfer Plan via the link on the page that follows: