True Tales from Dickerson Park Zoo Book CoverCongratulations to Mike Crocker, Dickerson Park Zoo director, on the release of his new book!

“I pulled the croc back to me and bear-hugged him to my body. He was around seventy pounds and about all I could manage by myself.”

“I was moving a Burmese python when it struck me…The snake coiled rapidly around my hand and leg.”

Read these and more crazy animal stories in "True Tales from Dickerson Park Zoo: There’s a Crocodile in the Bathtub!" by Dickerson Park Zoo director Mike Crocker.

Published by a local company, Pages and Pie Publishing, True Tales from Dickerson Park Zoo is a creative non-fiction collection of stories based on Crocker’s lifetime fascination with animals and 45+ years with Dickerson Park Zoo in Springfield, Missouri.

Passionate about saving species, Crocker shares not only about the wild and often dangerous world of working with animals, but he also elaborates on how far animal husbandry and Dickerson Park Zoo have come.

“The stories in True Tales from Dickerson Park Zoo provide a peek behind Mike’s steady, quiet demeanor and lets the readers see the moments, decisions and ultimately, the love and joy it takes to lead a world-class, and perhaps even more importantly, locally appreciated zoo.” Daniel Hilliard, Ph.D., Executive Director, Zoo Conservation Outreach Group (ZCOG)

True Tales from Dickerson Park Zoo is available in paperback and hardcover at and It will also be available in the Safari Trading Company gift shop at Dickerson Park Zoo and ABC Books, 2109 N. Glenstone Ave.