On your next Palm Springs vacation, set out on a wildlife safari at the Living Desert. There you can encounter wildlife in its natural habitat. They also have animals and plants that flourish in the desert from all around the world.
Formerly the Living Desert Museum, today it is a public desert botanical garden and a zoo located in Palm Desert, California. They are in the Sonoran Desert of the Coachella Valley and Santa Rosa Mountains foothills near Palm Springs, California.
As originally envisioned the Living Desert consisted of gardens of the low desert and of the high desert. The low desert gardens of the Colorado Desert, was established in 1970 as a 360 acre wilderness preserve. By 1974 the gardens housed a kit fox, tortoises, lizards, and two bighorn sheep. In 1975 the Mojave Garden was built as a replica of the high desert.
Additional facilities have gradually been constructed, including greenhouses, model trains, and designed landscapes gardens. Animals include: rhim gazelles, mountain lions, bobcats and badgers, meerkats, cheetahs, warthogs, striped hyenas, giraffes and ostriches.
The “Amphibians on the Edge” exhibit shows a variety of different species of frogs, toads, and salamanders and is a favorite of the little ones. A Endangered Species Carousel was constructed in fall 2009, and the Peninsular Pronghorn exhibit was constructed in fall 2010.
An attraction where you can ride on camels is really fun for young and old. Unfortunately, I understand that it is scheduled to be replaced by a jaguar exhibit in the spring 2011.
Fanciful Flyers is a 3,000 square foot walk-through exhibit filled with hundreds fluttering butterflies and a dozen zippy hummingbirds within the setting of a tranquil garden. The garden includes over 60 species of butterfly and hummingbird friendly plants, many of which are in bloom.
Ant colonies are usually hidden, but you can experience the New Ant Lab! Our colony of long-legged desert ants is completely exposed! Ants are very busy individuals and in this fascinating exhibit, you can watch 10,000 ants do their work.
Step out from the heat and step into a cool place and welcome to a NEW Discovery Center. The Miriam U. Hoover Discovery Center is an interactive exhibit space where visitors of all ages can discover, understand, and learn about the Coachella Valley Region.
Today, the Living Desert Zoo and Gardens are the only American zoo and botanic garden combination dedicated solely to the deserts of the world. The programs provide: environmental education; native wildlife rehabilitation; plant propagation and habitat restoration; and captive breeding of African and Sonoran Desert species, including the area’s iconic Desert Bighorn Sheep.
The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens is a must stop on your next vacation to Palm Springs and the California desert resort cities.