Thursday, March 13, 2014

Giraffe Ranch

Every year I try to find at least one thing that we haven't done yet in Florida to try to explore more of the state and also branch out past Disney and Universal. This year we literally branched out. In my research, I found a privately owned giraffe ranch that offers safari rides and the chance to feed giraffes. That's right. A giraffe ranch. Naturally, I was all for it since I love giraffes. We made reservations for the Friday morning that we would be in Florida.

IMG_3905a

IMG_3911a

IMG_3912a

IMG_3929a

IMG_3943a

The ranch is owned by a married couple who had been all over the world working with animals. The man who runs the ranch has worked in zoos all over the country and the world. They've even been to Africa and have seen animals in the wild! They were so incredibly knowledgeable and I learned a lot from just the 2 hours that we were there.

IMG_3959a

IMG_3910a

IMG_3907a

IMG_3963a

IMG_3915a

There were four giraffes that were out when we stopped to feed them. Only two of them came over to munch some cabbage and leaves. One was the baby, and the other I think was the father. We didn't see her in person, but there was a newborn giraffe who had been born just 20 minutes before we arrived and they had the live feed from their cameras on the screen for us to watch in their little gift shop. She was the cutest! She was trying to walk and was all wobbly and she would kneel on the ground and then try to get up, but she couldn't quite get the hang of it yet. I wish we could've seen the newborn in person! I also wish we could pet them, but we were advised not to because they don't like it.

IMG_3919a

IMG_3936a

IMG_3970a

IMG_3923a

IMG_3930a

The giraffes are so strong when they pull the leaves from the branches. You have to really hold onto the branch so that they don't pull it out of your hands. The daddy giraffe gummed my finger when he was eating the cabbage out of my hand. It hurt a little, but it wasn't like a bite or anything. They are so pretty and graceful when they walk, and I love the way they stand when they need to bend down to get to the ground.

IMG_3948a

IMG_3969a

IMG_3932a

IMG_3917a

IMG_3949a

They have a ton of other animals in addition to the giraffes. They have a couple of rhinos (which you can also feed) and a bunch of camels. They have lynxes, servals, warthogs, cows, zebra, and the cutest little tiny fennec foxes! They remind me of the Pokemon named Eevee (one of my favorite evolutions). The guy even has one as a pet in his house and it uses the litter box and everything. It's all really amazing. They also have a lot of different monkeys and they have chickens and donkeys.

IMG_3894a

IMG_3901a

IMG_3898a

IMG_3900a

IMG_3896a

The guy told us a story about this hybrid breed that they have one of called a zedonk. It is part zebra and part donkey/mule. The mule had a mate, but he was really just infatuated with this one lady zebra so he turned his back on his mate and pursued the lady zebra for four years until finally he got her in a ditch and seduced her, I suppose. The zebra got pregnant and gave birth to this zedonk, which is sort of grey in color but has striped legs.

IMG_3971a

IMG_3972a

IMG_3973a

IMG_3916a

IMG_3967a

It was pretty chilly the day we went and it was really windy too, so I was kinda cold the whole time. It definitely beats the winter temperatures at home, though. Of course, I had to wear my giraffe shirt for the occasion. :) I need to remember to pack tights with me when I come here because although it's warm, sometimes it does get cold enough to need something on your legs.

IMG_3974a

IMG_3951a

IMG_3935a

IMG_3962a
IMG_3977a
Top: Tommy Hilfiger//Skirt: BooHoo//Sweater: Delia's//Shoes: Clarks//Belt: Forever 21//Bag: ASOS
The trip to this ranch was so informative and it was so fun to see all these animals up close. I don't know if this is weird or not, but I'm very picky when it comes to visiting places like zoos and aquariums. They have to have the right selection of animals to see for me to want to go. I mostly want to see big cats, giraffes, and dolphins. If a place doesn't have these, I feel iffy about going. I'm not a huge fan of fish or birds or monkeys. They all freak me out a little. I'm always glad to see when places have all or some of the animals I love. :)

4 comments:

  1. OMG! No word of a lie, this is the best blog post I've ever read! I'm obsessed with giraffes, loved them for years and years so this has made my day!

    Love your giraffe shirt .. I have a few giraffe dresses, a giraffe jumper and two giraffe t-shirts (forget crazy cat lady, I'm a crazy giraffe lady!)

    I feel like I need to go to the US now just to get myself to this place x

    ReplyDelete
  2. noooooooooo so cute!! this sounds so fun:) I've been telling ryan I want a fennec fox for years, and I've always thought it was the closest thing to a pokemon too! ha. so cute.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Where is this?! I have a mild obsession with giraffes and the local zoo doesnt have them. If I got to feed one I might actually die. These photos are adorable and so is your outfit! Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete