Pumpkin Patches Donate Leftover Pumpkins to Oakland Zoo

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Oakland Zoo's zookeepers get crafty with leftover pumpkins, making kabobs, frozen piñatas, meat treat bowls, puzzle feeders, pumpsickles, furniture, and scent containers for zoo animals.

Sun Bear eating pumpkin

"A favorite time of year, especially for the elephants, is when we receive leftover pumpkin donations from local patches in the area,” said Gina Kinzley, Co-Elephant Manager at Oakland Zoo.

Pumpkin Patches Donate Leftover Pumpkins to Oakland Zoo

The aftermath of Halloween has resulted in a plethora of leftover goodies donated to Oakland Zoo. Pumpkins, orange seasonal delicacies, are something the animals definitely enjoy, and visitors seem to love watching elephants and other creatures feast on the plump treats well after October 31st.

***Media Advisory: On Tuesday, November 24 from 11:00am – 12:30pm, interviews with zookeepers as well as video and photo opportunities of animals enjoying pumpkins will be available. Please contact Nicky Mora at (510) 632-9525, ext 130 if you plan on attending. Media should meet under the Oakland Zoo sign at the Main Entrance of the Zoo.***

  •     11:00am: Sun Bears     
  •     11:30pm: Baboons    
  •     11:45pm: Elephants
  •     12:15pm: Meerkats

Zookeepers and volunteers transported and unloaded truckloads of large, medium, and mini pumpkins from local farmers. Besides being a healthy treat that’s on the zoo’s current commissary menu, zookeepers are inclined to use their creativity to make the vegetables into inspiring items for carnivores, who normally turn their noses up to anything not made of meat. Pumpkin kabobs, frozen piñatas, meat treat bowls, puzzle feeders, pumpsickles, furniture, and scent containers are a few examples of how zoo staffers get crafty with the Halloween leftovers. "A favorite time of year, especially for the elephants, is when we receive leftover pumpkin donations from local patches in the area,” said Gina Kinzley, Co-Elephant Manager at Oakland Zoo. “As part of a healthy diet and enrichment, the elephants and other species such as giraffe, bison, and chimpanzees, will eat hundreds of pounds pumpkin throughout the next several months.” It’s not just people that enjoy pumpkin flavored food items during the fall; Zoo visitors can watch Oakland Zoo residents relish their pumpkin treats daily throughout the months of November and December.

Oakland Zoo would like to thank Moore’s Pumpkins and Pick of the Patch Pumpkins. This year, several hundred pumpkins and gourds were donated as well as five two-hundred pound pumpkins!

ABOUT OAKLAND ZOO: The Bay Area’s award-winning Oakland Zoo is home to more than 660 native and exotic animals. The Zoo offers many educational programs and kid’s activities perfect for science field trips, family day trips and exciting birthday parties. Oakland Zoo is dedicated to wildlife conservation onsite and worldwide. Nestled in the Oakland Hills, in 500-acre Knowland Park, the Zoo is located at 9777 Golf Links Road, off Highway 580. The East Bay Zoological Society (Oakland Zoo) is a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization supported in part by members, contributions, the City of Oakland and the East Bay Regional Parks. For more information please visit our website at http://www.oaklandzoo.org.

Contact:
Nicky Mora, Senior Manager, Marketing/PR
(510) 632-9525 ext. 130
nmora(at)oaklandzoo(dot)org

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Nicky Mora, Senior Manager, PR
Oakland Zoo
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