st louis zoo

Casey Morell / KBIA

The penguins and puffins exhibit at the St. Louis Zoo will be closing, at least temporarily.

The zoo said Monday that the closing is necessary as work begins on a new polar bear exhibit. The closing date isn't set but it is expected to happen in the fall and continue through early 2015.

The McDonnell Polar Bear Point is expected to open in the spring of 2015. It will feature a walk-through cave where visitors can watch polar bears swim above them.

wwarby / Flickr

Unlike their cold-weather relatives, Humboldt penguins live only in South America, along the rocky Pacific coast of Chile and Peru. The Saint Louis Zoo’s Michael Macek has been monitoring the penguins there, tracking their health and numbers.