Giraffe and Friends zoo exhibit set to open March 10th

$8.3 million project is costliest in Topeka Zoo history
Published: Aug. 31, 2022 at 5:17 PM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - The largest project in the history of the Topeka Zoo is on budget but behind schedule. Opening day has been set for March 10th for the new Giraffe and Friends exhibit. March 10th was chosen for it’s timing with spring break and with Kansas Kids Wrestling which brings in lots of out of town visitors.

Topeka Zoo Director Brendan Wiley said in a press conference today that the slowed construction is mostly the result of supply shortages and shipping delays.

The giraffes currently at the zoo will be moved at the end of September. The zoo figures that they easiest way tot get them to their new home is to simply walk them there.

“They are very food motivated and very motivated by their keepers,” said Adrienne Sebade, a zoo keeper at the Topeka Zoo, “so we are just going to kind of walk with them. They will be inside a little safety shoot and we will be on the outside, we don’t share spaces with them and we will try and walk them down to the end of the yard and encourage them to come enjoy their new space.”

Once the giraffes are moved they will no longer be visible to the public until the grand opening of the new facility in March. In addition to the giraffes, the exhibit will feature gazelle, antelope and even ostrich. Those animals are expected to arrive at the zoo starting in October. Once at the zoo, these newcomers will need to quarantine for 30 days.

The budget has been raised since the initial plan due to increased funds and in case you’re wandering, the total investment for the south side of the zoo since 2018 is nearly $20 million.