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Candice Rennels | (405) 425-0298 | crennels@okczoo.org
 


OKC Zoo News Releases

OKC ZOO AND BOB MOORE SUBARU CELEBRATE WORLD GIRAFFE DAY, JUNE 21

World Giraffe Day is Monday, June 21, and the Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden is proud to partner with Bob Moore Subaru and participate in this worldwide celebration dedicated to raising awareness for the planet’s tallest animal.

Hosted annually on the longest day of the year, June 21, World Giraffe Day, is an exciting event initiated by the Giraffe Conservation Foundation (GCF) that brings millions together in support of giraffe and habitat conservation. Learn about the threats these iconic and endangered animals are facing, and the importance of protecting and managing their populations in Africa.

This World Giraffe Day, Zoo guests can participate in a variety of activities, presented locally by Bob Moore Subaru, that highlight the OKC Zoo’s giraffe family, as well as what the Zoo is doing to protect wild giraffes and their native rangelands and ways that you can help conserve these magnificent creatures. Giraffe lovers will also have the opportunity to see the Zoo’s newest addition to its giraffe family, a male calf that was born on June 3, to giraffe matriarch, Ellie. Event activities will be setup near the giraffe habitat from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and include:

  • Kids Activities with Prizes: Participants 11 and under will have opportunity to learn more about our tower of giraffes through two interactive activities: Spot Safari! and Happy “Giraffidae” Day.

  • Facebook Live Chats with the Zoo’s giraffe caretakers at 10 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Tune in here, Facebook, for both talks.

  • Animal Enrichment (10 a.m. at the giraffe habitat): Watch as our gentle giants enjoy enrichment treats provided by their caretakers.

  • Conservation Education Station: View bio-facts and hear what the Zoo is doing to help wild giraffe and their habitat and how you can help.

  • Zoo Silage Program Station: Peeled, sealed, delivered! Discover how the Zoo preserves seasonal browse for its giraffe and other animals to enjoy during the winter.

  • Photo Opportunities sponsored by Bob Moore Subaru.

The Zoo is home to five giraffes with one on the way! Tower members include females Ellie (20), Julu (5) and Mashamba (2) plus, males Demetri (4) and Ellie’s calf. Ellie’s daughter, Julu, is pregnant and expected to deliver her first calf soon. Demetri is the father to both Ellie and Julu’s calves. Stretch the fun out on World Giraffe Day and experience the thrill of feeding the Zoo’s giraffes during two feeding sessions at 11 a.m. to noon and 2 to 3 p.m. The cost is $5 per person. Tickets can be pre-purchased online or at the giraffe feeding platform.

According to the GCF, it’s estimated that the current Africa-wide giraffe population is approximately 117,000 individuals, almost a 30% population decrease since the 1980s. Wild giraffe populations have declined due to habitat destruction and poaching. Knowing the threats wild giraffe populations are facing, the Association of Zoos and Aquariums created the Giraffe SAFE (Saving Animals from Extinction) program in 2017. The OKC Zoo is proud to be a Giraffe SAFE partner committed to providing annual financial support for giraffe conservation programs in Africa and bring attention to the importance of protecting this beloved member of the animal kingdom.

The OKC Zoo’s Top Ten World Giraffe Day Facts

  1. The giraffe uses its 18-inch prehensile tongue to remove leaves from thorny trees.

  2. Giraffe horns are called ossicones, which are made of ossified cartilage.

  3. The giraffe’s tongue is a dark purple color, which prevents sunburn.

  4. Giraffes are ungulates, meaning they have hooves and walk on their toes.

  5. The okapi is the giraffe’s closest living relative. Bonus Fun Fact: The Zoo’s okapi, male Bosomi (2) and female Kayin (5) reside in the habitat next to the giraffes!

  6. Giraffes have seven cervical (neck vertebrae), same as humans.

  7. Giraffes have 32 teeth (8 incisors and 24 molars), same as humans.

  8. A giraffe’s heart weighs about 25 pounds and is the size of a basketball.

  9. Giraffes have the highest blood pressure of any animal.

  10. Giraffes are ruminants, meaning they have a four-chambered stomach, like a cow.

Let’s rise up to help giraffes this World Giraffe Day! The Oklahoma City Zoo is currently in its summer hours and open daily open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. with the last entry no later than 4 p.m. Purchase advance tickets at www.okczoo.org/tickets and avoid the entry lines. Located at the crossroads of I-44 and I-35, the OKC Zoo is a proud member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, the American Alliance of Museums, Oklahoma City’s Adventure District and an Adventure Road partner. Regular admission is $12 for adults and $9 for children ages 3-11 and seniors ages 65 and over. Children two and under are admitted free. Stay connected with the Zoo on FacebookTwitterInstagram and TikTok, and by visiting our blog stories. Zoo fans can support the OKC Zoo by becoming a ZOOfriends member. Starting at $45, memberships can be purchased at ZOOfriends.org and provide access to the OKC Zoo for an entire year plus, additional benefits and discounts. To learn more about Zoo happenings, call (405) 424-3344 or visit okczoo.org.

-okczoo-

 

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