African adventures at Noah's Ark Zoo Farm
20th June 2014
Our little corner of the South West will be turned into an African paradise for Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm’s first Out of Africa event this weekend. We are holding our Out of Africa Day on Saturday, June 21 with a full day of fantastic activities, including traditional live music, to keep all members of the family happy all day. This exciting event aims to teach people about the many wonderful animals on the Ark which hail from the African continent – in particular drawing attention to the vital conservation efforts of giraffes as we mark global World Giraffe Day.
World Giraffe Day is being held on the longest day of the year (in the northern hemisphere) as a nod to the height of the world’s tallest animal! Nine different subspecies of Giraffes live across the African continent and while the specialist animals don’t have to compete with other species for food – who else can reach as high as them? – all of these are threatened by human interaction, including habitat loss and poaching. The Rothschild’s Giraffe, which lives in Uganda and Kenya, is classified as endangered, meaning it is likely to become extinct in the near future due to the falling numbers in the wild. It is thought that less than 1,000 are living in the wild. The Masai, or Kilimanjaro, Giraffe is the most populous, with an estimated 37,000 in the wild plains of Kenya and Tanzania – but it too is threatened by poachers. Head along to the Rhino and Giraffe enclosures at 2pm to hear a special talk from the animals’ keepers and get a first-hand insight into the lives of these majestic creatures from the people that know them best. A similar talk will be taking place at our popular Meerkat exhibit, celebrating this much smaller but equally fascinating African species. Make sure to get down early as we are expecting it to be busy on the farm as people head down to enjoy one of our biggest family days out of the year. There will be professional African dancers performing and visitors will have the chance to enjoy seeing mighty African animals like our Lions and Buta the elephant. We’ll be putting on special enrichment activities to keep these intelligent animals engaged and interested in their surroundings. Our daily programme of events will be running as usual, including our Big Cat feeding talk and tours of Buta the elephant’s home in Elephant Eden.
Some incredible African culture will be heading to Wraxall for the day too as African dance troupe Ballet Nimba joins us for performances at 12.45pm and 2.15pm. The award-winning team and WOMAD festival favourites will be performing an exciting mix of authentic dance, song and drums, bringing the sounds of the continent to life. Our African event is supporting an important cause which works in Uganda’s largest slum in its capital city Kampala. Hope for Life Katanga provides vital support for families living in crushing poverty, including educational opportunities for children and young people.
The charity’s director will be at Noah’s Ark on Saturday to give a short presentation about he charity’s work. To find out more about Hope for Life, visit the Giraffe enclosure at 12.40pm. You can support our conservation of many of these species through your visits to Noah’s Ark and through adopting one of our animals for yourself. African animals like Rhinos, Giraffes and Gibbons are all available for adoption. This weekend we will also have authentic African products and World Giraffe Day souvenirs on sale at stalls in the zoo, with money going towards NGOs supporting families and giraffe conservation. We are open from Monday – Saturday, 10:30am – 5pm.
For more information about Out of Africa visit the Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm website or call 01275 852606.