Coming Soon: Meet the Rhinos on their way to the Living Desert Zoo and Gardens
Welcome to Coachella, Jaali and Nia Valley! The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens will host two eastern black rhinos this fall.
“This is the first time that The Living Desert has been home to rhinos, and the team has worked hard to prepare for their arrival,” Allen Monroe, president / CEO of The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens told News Channel 3 in a communicated.
“We can’t wait to introduce Jaali and Nia to their new home at The Living Desert,” said RoxAnna Breitigan, Director of Animal Care.
Zoo staff hope the couple will form a family unit in the new habitat. “As one of 25 establishments accredited by AZA to care for eastern black rhinos, we are all working together collaboratively to ensure this iconic species does not become extinct,” said Breitigan. “These two have been strategically paired, and we have high hopes for their future breeding success here at The Living Desert.
Jaali and Nia will not be alone in their new habitat. The zoo also plans to add eleven new species, including the springbok, water cob, pelicans, hairless mole rats and mongoose.
Meet Jaali: Jaali was born on December 24, 2019 to his mother, Doppsee, and father, Phineus, and his birth marked the first rhino birth at Potter Park Zoo in its 100-year history. Jaali means “mighty” in Swahili, and according to his Potter Park Zoo animal care team he is very curious and loves attention. Jaali is from the Potter Park Zoo in Lansing, Michigan.
Meet Nia: Nia, which means “goal” in Swahili, was born on August 20, 2018 to her mother, Inge, and father, Forrest. Her animal care team shared that Nia is very intelligent and eager to learn and participate in her breeding training. Nia will arrive from the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo in Cleveland, Ohio.
The new habitat
Last September, The Living Desert gave viewers of News Channel 3 a preview of the progress being made. Check out this report on the new rhino habitat here.
“You know these amazing chubby unicorns as we like to call them; they are critically endangered in the wild,” Allen Monroe, CEO and President of Living Desert Zoo and Gardens, told News Channel 3 in an interview. exclusive last fall.
CHECK IT OUT: Live interactive webcams showing the animals at Living Desert Zoo & Gardens
This is part of a great effort called “Carrefour pour la conservation”. This is a master plan that began in 2015 to help protect endangered species.
You can watch the construction live here:
“Now we’re starting to add new animal components, new animal habitats so that we can tell the conservation stories of some amazing desert species,” Monroe said at the time. “It will be a multi-species habitat and the top attractions will be a black rhino breeding pair,” he said.
Watch the video below to see the plans for the Rhino Savannah.
They’re crossing their fingers to have baby rhinos at the zoo in the next few years, but that’s not all.
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“We have other species of antelope that will be with the rhinos,” Monroe explained. “Things like the Springbok and the Waterbok, the Klipspringer and new species of birds that we will be incorporating here in our collection of animals. Species of pelicans and vultures,” he said.
This is a colossal project costing $ 17 million.
So where does the money come from? “The funds for this kind of project come from our capital programs and so we have been fundraising for several years to collect the millions of dollars that are needed that donors give us specifically to continue to improve the park on a large scale. scale. like that, ”he said last fall.
“The $ 17 million four-acre Rhino Savanna is only made possible with the incredible and continued support of our members, donors and the Coachella Valley community,” Monroe said in a statement Thursday. “Rhinos are iconic symbols of the wildlife trafficking crisis, and this new habitat will help us educate our clients about the plight of the rhino and allow us to continue our efforts to protect the black rhino in Africa. “
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