PALM DESERT/INDIAN WELLS – From this day forward the newest giraffe calf born March 20, 2019 at The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens shall be called Vicki Lou.

The giraffe calf, Vicki Lou, was named through a generous gift of $100,000 by an anonymous donor, and was named in honor of a loved one, Zoo officials announced Monday.

Vicki Lou was born in the early morning hours of March 20, 2019 to mother, Dadisi, and father, Hesabu. At her well-baby check last week, she weighed in at 149.6 pounds and stood 6 feet 1 inch tall. Vicky Lou made her public debut in the giraffe habitat on Friday, March 29th and continues to delight guests.

“We are thrilled to formally announce our baby giraffe’s name – Vicki Lou,” Allen Monroe, President/CEO of The Living Desert, said in a prepared statement. “The generous naming gift will continue to
support The Living Desert’s conservation initiatives and programs that help save giraffe from extinction.”

The anonymous donor’s significant gift will help support giraffe  conservation projects, such as Wild Nature Institute’s (WNI) environmental education programs. WNI works with teachers and schools to inspire the next generation of Tanzanian conservationists through
educational materials, storytelling, activities and workshops.


Mother and Daughter

“We are grateful for our anonymous donor’s generosity and support of The Living Desert,” Jan Hawkins, Director of Development, said in a prepared statement. “By naming our newest giraffe calf, our donors are sharing their commitment to the future of desert wildlife here in the Coachella Valley and around the world.”

Currently listed by the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) as vulnerable, giraffe populations have declined up to 40% over the last 30 years. There are fewer than 98,000 giraffe in the wild. Native to southern and eastern Africa, major threats to giraffe population is habitat loss and fragmentation, civil unrest, and ecological changes.

Visitors can get up-close and personal with these majestic animals, including Vicki Lou, by participating in the giraffe feedings from 9:30 a.m.- 2:30 p.m. daily. The cost is $7 per person or $5 for members. The Living Desert is open daily from 9 a.m.- 5 p.m., with last admission at 4 p.m.

Image Sources

  • Giraffe Calf At Living Desert: The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens
  • Mother and Baby Giraffe Calf: Living Desert Zoo and Gardens