We recently spent three weeks in Palm Desert, CA. While we were there, we found a great place to visit with the kids for a field trip: The Living Desert Zoo.
Living Desert Zoo was just a twenty-minute drive from our RV park, Thousand Trails Palm Springs RV Resort. As soon as we got there, we saw the next giraffe animal chat was coming up soon, so we headed for the giraffe exhibit. Unfortunately, we had already missed the time when you get to feed the giraffes, but we were excited nonetheless.
Once we got there, zookeepers were getting things ready for the chat leader. We watched as they called a giraffe named Twigga into the training area. Once she got there, they gave him a treat – it was SO cool to see a giraffe’s tongue up close! The chat leader talked to us about how much a giraffe weighs and invited volunteers to step on a scale on our side of the fence while Twigga stood on the other scale. The kids and I joined a few other parents and kids on the scale to match Twigga’s weight.
Then, she shared how they invite the animals to train, allowing them to choose to train in order to get a treat or to choose to stay outside the training area. She mentioned that the older giraffes are less likely to join the training as it’s a fairly new thing, but the younger giraffes enjoy the treats and attention. After the session, Hayley wanted to ask a question about the knobs on the giraffe’s heads. The keeper said they’re called ossicones and that the giraffes use them in the wild to assert dominance. She said the giraffes at Living Desert can sometimes be seen practicing with theirs by playing. It was SO fun to see a giraffe up close!
After the giraffe exhibit, the kids’ next favorite thing was the goat petting area. They had a bunch of little goats you could pet, and they even had some new baby goats to pet! The kids loved it! Ansley kept following goats around saying, “Hi!” She was TOO cute!
On top of all the animals, the Living Desert Zoo also offers an array of beautiful plants native to the area. We really enjoyed the sights and scents of the different garden areas.
Our family had SO much fun at the Living Desert Zoo, and we can’t wait to go back! Next time, you can be sure we’ll go earlier in the day so we can feed Twigga and the other giraffes!