Salisbury Press

Thursday, October 18, 2018
PRESS PHOTO COURTESY LEHIGH VALLEY ZOOA new exhibit featuring two young male Masai giraffes from a zoo in Kansas City will be coming in 2016 to the Lehigh Valley Zoo, Schnecksville. PRESS PHOTO COURTESY LEHIGH VALLEY ZOOA new exhibit featuring two young male Masai giraffes from a zoo in Kansas City will be coming in 2016 to the Lehigh Valley Zoo, Schnecksville.

Giraffes coming to Lehigh Valley Zoo Organization embarks on historical capital campaign

Thursday, January 7, 2016 by CONTRIBUTED ARTICLE in Local News

Lehigh Valley Zoo is getting new residents in 2016, with the addition of two Masai giraffes.

The Masai giraffes’ home at Lehigh Valley Zoo will feature opportunities for zoo guests to get up-close and personal with the animals who are easy to interact with through feeding stations that will be built into an elevated platform.

“We are so very excited to announce our efforts in bringing these Masai giraffes to Lehigh Valley Zoo, marking one of the biggest expansion efforts the zoo has undertaken thus far,” Melissa Borland, president and CEO of Lehigh Valley Zoo said. “The Association of Zoos and Aquariums have already chosen two young male giraffes coming from a zoo in Kansas City. However, the zoo’s ultimate success will come from the efforts of the community to embrace and support Lehigh Valley Zoo during this historical moment.”

The 2016 capital Campaign invites the Lehigh Valley and zoo lovers to participate in this landmark initiative.

There are many ways to get involved, including:

• Adopt a Giraffe: When you adopt a plush giraffe you receive a certificate of adoption, photograph of the animal and two child passes to the zoo.

• Jeans for Giraffes: Local businesses can help bring giraffes to Lehigh Valley Zoo by promoting the new conservation pin for dress down days. Employees pay a small fee for each day they wear the pin, which allows them to wear jeans to work. The company raising the most money will receive a private giraffe feeding.

• Jingle for Giraffes: Participants will get a collection jar to raise money throughout their respective communities. The individual and organization raising the most will receive a private giraffe feeding.

• Capital Campaign Donations: Money can be donated directly to Lehigh Valley Zoo and earmarked solely for this campaign.

This capital campaign has already received a major push from an anonymous donor who has committed to a matching donation program.

The goal is to introduce the two Masai giraffes to Lehigh Valley Zoo members in August.

The Masai giraffe is the largest subspecies of giraffe and the tallest land mammal.

There are fewer than 37,000 remaining in the wild, though recent reports of significant poaching and the bush meat trade would suggest the number is likely to be significantly less.

The primary threat to the Masai giraffe is habitat loss as a result of the expanding human population.

The Lehigh Valley Zoo’s aim is to safeguard a population of giraffes in human care alongside a sustainable population in the wild.

Work is already under way on the new exhibit, as architectural and engineering firms are readying plans for this new space at Zoo.

Those wishing to get involved in the campaign can visit www.lvzoo.org or call 610-799-4171.