Tags Posts tagged with "Bobo the Giraffe"

Bobo the Giraffe

Bobo the Giraffe. Photo from Long Island Game Farm

Long Island Game Farm is sad to announce the sudden passing of their beloved giraffe, Bobo. Bobo passed away unexpectedly on the morning of October 2 from heart failure, according to the game farm’s veterinarian, Dr. Benjamin Haar. The three-year-old giraffe had been under routine care for parasites, which is common in giraffes. A necropsy examination is being coordinated, and results may take several months.

Long Island Game Farm president Melinda Novak shares, “We are so heartbroken. We loved Bobo beyond measure, and he was such a fixture at the park. We had been working hard to create a permanent home for him here. Bobo will be missed terribly.”

“Bobo was such an important member of our zoo family,” shares game farm director Greg Drossel. “His presence created so many lasting memories not only for the staff, but for all the visitors he touched with his gentle nature.“

This is all of the information currently available. More will be shared in the coming months when necropsy results are finalized.

Bobo the Giraffe is headed to South Carolina for the winter. Photo courtesy of LI Game Farm

The Long Island Game Farm Wildlife Park and Children’s Zoo, 489 Chapman Blvd., Manorville invites the community to Bobo’s Bon Voyage Party on Saturday, Sept. 16 at 4:30 p.m. 

This fundraising event is being presented by the Foundation for Wildlife Sustainability, Inc., the Game Farm’s new non-profit arm. Funds from the event will support the construction of a heated and air-conditioned giraffe house big enough to accommodate two giraffes, and offer year-round public programming to raise awareness of this incredible yet endangered species. 

“It has long been a dream of ours to host giraffes year-round at the Long Island Game Farm,” shares president Melinda Novak. “To further our goal of connecting people to wildlife, a year-round giraffe house will allow us space to keep two giraffes comfortably and present programming that will educate the public on these gentle giants.” 

“Bobo the Giraffe is one of our most popular residents in the summer months, and we hope his loyal fans will join us in sending him off for the season to warmer climates in South Carolina. Perhaps next year, he will be a permanent resident of the game farm!” added Novak.

The party will feature beer, wine, and hors d’oeuvres, music by the East End Trio, animal encounters with Bobo the Giraffe, Speedy the Tortoise, Snappy the Alligator, and Irwin & Susie the Wallabies, and auction of art created especially by game farm animals.

Formed in 2023, the Foundation for Wildlife Sustainability, Inc.’s mission is to connect people with wildlife and the natural environment, and to support the work of the Long Island Game Farm. The game farm is also a supporter of the Giraffe Conservation Foundation’s efforts to secure a future for all giraffe populations in the wild and will also donate a portion of ticket sales that week to the nonprofit organization.

Tickets begin at $150 per person. Sponsorship packages are also available. Details and tickets can be found at www.longislandgamefarm.com.

Come meet Bobo the Giraffe at the Long Island Game Farm. Portrait by Steve and Lori Biegler

In celebration of World Giraffe Day (June 21), the Long Island Game Farm in Manorville will launch a new kids’ activity pack to encourage education, engagement, and discovery. The first edition will be available the week of Monday, June 19 and centered around World Giraffe Day with a specially designed interactive scavenger hunt. As the game farm is a supporter of the Giraffe Conservation Foundation’s efforts to secure a future for all giraffe populations in the wild, the game farm will also donate a portion of ticket sales that week to the nonprofit organization. 

“Connecting people to wildlife is one of our top priorities of the game farm,” shares Long Island Game Farm president Melinda Novak. “These new kids’ activity packs are a way to deepen the connection children and families have with nature through fun yet educational activities. We’re excited to launch with a World Giraffe theme and an interactive scavenger hunt that we hope inspires a greater appreciation of these amazing creatures. At the game farm, we further our own commitment to wildlife by supporting the work of the Giraffe Conservation Foundation to save giraffes in Africa.”

BoBo the Giraffe is one of the game farm’s most beloved animals, and just returned this past May. Now, guests can participate in personal encounters to feed BoBo healthy snacks, take photos, and learn more about the species and conservation efforts around the world. Proceeds from this special encounter go towards building a heated giraffe house. 

National Family Month & Father’s Day

June is also National Family Month, and the activity packs available for purchase will be an ongoing option for kids to enjoy. Each pack includes an interactive scavenger hunt challenge and tool, game farm pencil, non-perishable snack, and an animal sticker. Staff will also be available throughout the month to take family portraits on guests’ phones and cameras. On Father’s Day, Sunday, June 18, dads will receive free admission.

Local Artisan Vendor Market – Saturday, June 24

Long Island Game Farm will launch its first-ever local artisan vendor market featuring planting propagation, wool felting, and floral painting demonstrations, local plant and product sales, and more. The market will be open on Saturday, June 24 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

As summer approaches, the game farm is planning a number of events including photo contests, “Zookeeper for a Day” contest for kids, and a weekly program for seniors.

Long Island Game Farm is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information about the game farm and upcoming programming, visit longislandgamefarm.com. 


Long Island Game Farm Wildlife Park and Children’s Zoo was founded in 1970 by Stanley and Diane Novak. As the largest combined children’s zoo and wildlife park on Long Island, they offer families a natural environment where they can learn about wildlife and animals through education and entertainment. A member of American Association of Zookeepers and Zoological Association of America, the farm is located at 489 Chapman Boulevard, Manorville, New York 11949. 

For more information, call 631-878-6644 or visit longislandgamefarm.com.

By Cayla Rosenhagen

Since 1970, the Long Island Game Farm Wildlife Park and Children’s Zoo in Manorville has been a premier location for families and people of all ages to visit and learn about all the feathered, furred, and scaled creatures with whom we share the Earth. It’s an ideal spot to foster environmental awareness, appreciation, and respect.

I hadn’t visited the Game Farm since I was very young, so returning here was extremely nostalgic for me. The moment I entered the gates and stepped onto the boardwalk surrounded by rich green forest, memories all started coming back to me. I was greeted by a friendly parrot and soon made my way to the first interactive exhibit — Bambiland. I was in utter awe spending time with the friendly, young Fallow Deer. They pranced around happily in their paddock and eagerly approached visitors, seeking food and attention.

In a similar fashion to the deer enclosure, the goat nursery also allows guests to step into the world of these curious creatures. It’s the perfect place for human kids to encounter goat kids. I felt nothing but sheer delight playing with and bottle-feeding the affectionate babies. I certainly had a difficult time leaving the goat pen, but I was prompted by my excitement to visit with all the other animals on the farm.

Throughout the day, I learned about and met all kinds of animals, from African Spurred Tortoises and Grant’s Zebras to peafowl and wallabies. There were also alpacas, llamas, bison, sheep, donkeys, rabbits, and more. 

The kind and welcoming staff members’ immense wealth of knowledge about the animals, as well as the abundance of informational signage all around the park greatly contributed to my experience and generated quite a few “wow!” moments. 

Additionally, I was fortunate to see Bobo, the almost-two-year-old reticulated giraffe majestically grazing and interacting with zookeepers. The gentle giant recently returned to the Game Farm from an extended vacation in the South, where the warmer winter weather is more tolerable to him. You can visit him all summer long, until he heads back down south again in October. 

Although I only saw Bobo from just outside his enclosure, guests do have the opportunity to get closer and even feed him with the V.I.P. Animal Tour. This all-inclusive package also encompasses wallaby, emu, zebra, and ring-tailed lemur encounters, and bottle-feeding opportunities at the nursery. There are also several individual encounters experiences, such as those with the zebras and camels, and children’s pony rides, some for additional fees.

Aside from the remarkable array of creatures to meet, the Game Farm offers amenities such as their snack bar with kid-friendly menu items, gift shop, picnic grounds, and playground areas.

The Long Island Game Farm is located at 489 Chapman Blvd. in Manorville. Weather permitting, you can visit the Game Farm any day of the week from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. through September. General admission tickets cost $24.95 for adults (ages 13-61), $21.95 for seniors (age 62 and older), $18.95 for kids (ages 3-12) and toddlers and babies two and under are free! For more information, please call  631-878-6644 or visit www.longislandgamefarm.com.

Cayla Rosenhagen

Author Cayla Rosenhagen is a local high school student who enjoys capturing the unique charm of the community through photography and journalism. She serves on the board of directors for the Four Harbors Audubon Society and Brookhaven’s Youth Board, is the founder and coordinator of Beach Bucket Brigade, a community outreach program dedicated to environmental awareness, engagement, and education, and pens a column for TBR News Media titled Cayla’s Column.

*This article originally appeared in TBR News Media’s 2022 Summer Times Supplement.