World Giraffe Weekend June 18 and 19
Join us the weekend of June 18-19 as we celebrate World Giraffe Day! Our three Reticulated Giraffe will be out on exhibit all day as usual, but during this special weekend we will have lots of extra events planned! Stop by at scheduled times to watch the giraffe interact with enrichment, learn during a training session, or even have a chance to feed a giraffe yourself! Stop by our table near the giraffe feeding dock to find out why we love giraffe and what you can do to help them in the wild!
This year, we will also be collecting old jeans to support Jeans for Giraffes. All your old denim will be recycled, and the money from that is used to support giraffe conservation! Remember to bring all your old jeans with you, and don’t forget to get some raffle tickets while you’re at it! Prizes include animal artwork, animal meet and greets, and other fun prizes!
There are currently nine subspecies of giraffe, although there is continuous debate as to whether any of them are actually distinct species. A giraffe’s diet is made up mostly of leaves, including those found among the large thorns of acacia trees. Their 20-inch long tongue helps them reach the highest leaves, and the tongue’s dark color most likely prevents it from getting sunburned. When you watch our giraffe, you may notice they don’t seem to rest much. Giraffe lay down and sleep for no more than five minutes at a time!
Here at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, we have three Reticulated Giraffe, the smallest of nine subspecies of giraffe. Reticulated Giraffe can be found in Kenya, Somalia, and Ethiopia. However, there are only about 4,700 individuals in the wild today. Poaching and loss of habitat are two main threats to giraffe. As humans continue to encroach on giraffe habitat, we not only take away land and food resources from giraffe, but can also introduce diseases from livestock to wild giraffe.
Of the three giraffe we have, our youngest (and largest!) giraffe is Brandon. Brandon loves to participate in training sessions, and knows a wide range of behaviors that allow us to care for him better. His mother, Makali, is our oldest at eleven years old. Her absolute favorite thing to do is eat, even if it means pushing Brandon out of the way to get to the food. Last but not least we have Rosie at eight years old. She is our smallest, lightest-colored giraffe, and you can often find her playing with her blue barrel out in the yard.
At Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, we want to do as much as possible to help the wild relatives of our giraffe. Any donations (including jeans!) made on the weekend of June 18-19 will be sent to the Giraffe Conservation Fund allowing partners in Africa to raise awareness and implement programs in the field to help save giraffe.