2022 Annual Appeal - Conservation in Action supporting Friends of the Rosamond Gifford Zoo
Friends of the Rosamond Gifford Zoo

How Your Support Makes a Difference

Your generous donation ensures our ability to care for all of these important animals — to save and preserve their future, and educate our community in the process. 

Contributions, of any amount, help us maintain the important work happening here at the zoo. From excellent animal care and conservation to engaging guest experiences and public education, we rely on your help to implement our important mission. 

Please send what you can to ensure the continued care and protection of some of the most vulnerable species on the planet. 

When you look at the world through the eyes of children, you see the world as it should be – full of wonder and promise.

It puts a smile on my face to see their joy and excitement as they walk around the zoo with family and friends. You can’t help but want to make sure the world is a better place for them and for future generations.

That is why we are here and that is why zoos matter.

Our mission embraces the importance of connecting people to animals and the natural world and the protection of vulnerable species from extinction. We live this mission every day.

The zoo is also a place where magical things can happen. 

When Asian elephant Mali went into labor on October 24, the elephant care team was beyond prepared. After a 22-month gestation period, everyone was highly anticipating the delivery. What they didn’t anticipate, however, was that ten hours after Mali delivered her calf – she would deliver a second. No one knew Mali was pregnant with twins! 

Elephant twins make up only 1% of all elephant births. That both of Mali’s twins were alive was nothing short of a miracle. The animal care team and veterinary staff immediately sprang into action knowing the urgency of the situation. The second calf was weaker than the first and needed assistance to help him breath, stand and walk. They also gave him supplemental feedings and weeks of round-the-clock monitoring and care.

The zoo is one of only eight accredited zoos entrusted to breed Asian elephants and contribute to important scientific research. Immediately after the births, Mali’s placentas were transported out of state for research toward the treatment and development of a vaccine to combat Elephant Endotheliotropic Herpes Virus (EEHV), a lethal strain of herpes believed to naturally occur among elephants in a dormant form.

After weeks of hard work, Mali’s calves are now thriving and growing stronger each day. It was incredibly heart-warming to see the beaming faces of young and old when the twins made their public debut on November 10.

And we celebrated another victory this past summer when our red panda Simone had her first cub. Her name is Raji – Hindu for “Princess” – and she is truly “royalty” as her unique bloodline is extremely important for the genetic diversity of the species. With our ongoing dedication to the management programs of endangered species like Asian elephants, red pandas and more, we hope to make a positive impact on these populations worldwide.

Your support has never been more important. Your contributions, of any amount, will help us to continue the amazing miracles and conservation milestones that happen, right here, at the Rosamond Gifford Zoo. Together, we can strive for a better world by making connections and inspiring our children and future generations.

Thank you for your support and being part of our Friends of the Zoo family,

Carrie Large
Executive Director
Friends of the Rosamond Gifford Zoo