Gustave Loisel (1864–1933) is known as the first historian of zoological gardens. His Histoire des ménageries (1912), still a work of reference today, actually emanated from extensive journeys in the years between 1906 and 1910 as an envoy of the French state. This chapter focuses on Loisel’s “field research” in Scandinavia and Eastern Europe. He found a number of zoological institutions in Stockholm, Breslau (Wrocław), Budapest and tsarist Russia exemplary – and suggested to his French superiors to take notice with respect to the planned reforms of the Paris zoo. Loisel’s interests were comprehensive: he had his eyes set on organizational and economic issues, zoo architecture and animal keeping; i.e. how to best breed, feed and acclimatize them. In fact, analyzing Loisel’s voluminous work, zoological gardens may best be understood as an interurban and transnational institution in which best practices were intensely discussed not only on a European, but on a global scale. The constant exchange of best practice models through visits, letters and publications was by no means unidirectional. This chapter illustrates that the so-called “periphery” could provide ideas and blueprints considered worthy of emulation for the “center”; in this case, Paris.