Monday, April 22, 2013

Happy Earth Day and Happy 15th Anniversary, Animal Kingdom!

Happy Earth Day, and what else is going on? Today is also the day Disney is celebrating Animal Kingdom's 15th Anniversary. Here are some facts about the Animal Kingdom that might interest you: The Animal Kingdom Project was announced June 5, 1995. Ground was broken in August 1995 and the Grand Opening was held on April 22, 1998. Since 1995, the Disney Wildlife Conservation Fund has devoted more than $6 million to conservation efforts around the world and has supported more than 230 projects.

The Animal Kingdom is about 580 acres, with approximately 250 species represented by over 1,000 animals living there. The park is five times the size of the Magic Kingdom, making it the largest Disney Theme Park in the world.

To keep 1,000 animals takes about four tons of food a day (that’s a 4 1/2 year supply for the average person). More than 2,000 pounds of vegetation is fed to the animals every day, and many varieties of worms are provided; including mealworms, red wigglers, night crawlers and wax worms. 40,000 in a week! Dieticians order 80,000 crickets per month as part of the healthy diet for the animals.

Disney’s Animal Kingdom is home to the largest groups of African elephants  and Nile hippos in North America. Animal Kingdom scientists have discovered two new vocalizations never before reported in elephants. The arrival of a black rhino calf born at Disney’s Animal Kingdom made him one of only 250 worldwide.

The number of species that have reproduced since the park opened is 116.

Animal Programs veterinarians have successfully performed surgery on a tarantula spider, placed an artificial eye in a fish and removed a golf ball from a confused snake rescued at a Disney golf course. The Animal Programs team performs more than 600 wellness checks per year.

Sixty dump trucks of dirt were delivered to Disney’s Animal Kingdom construction site every day for two years straight, equaling 4.4 million cubic yards of dirt.


Harambe is Swahili for coming together. Kilimanjaro Safari is named for a mountain in Tanzania. It is the largest attraction ever created by Disney. In fact, the entire Magic Kingdom Park can fit inside! Pangani Trail is Swahili for place of enchantment.

Did you know that The Tree of Life is 145 feet tall and its leafy branches spread 160 feet? It is topped with more than 103,000 semi-transparent, multi-colored green leaves that actually blow in the wind. Ten artists and three Imagineers worked full-time for 18 months to create the 325 animal carvings on The Tree of Life. Sculptors had between six and 10 hours to create the finished image before the plaster hardened.

(thank you to, and  for these fun facts)


  1. WOW! Did you you and Barbie take the pics? The one of the giraffes was awesome! Nice article.

  2. Thanks Dr.D,yes,these were all taken by either Barbie or me.

  3. Thanks Dr. D! I wish the cameras weren't so cumbersome! But If you see someone with lots of cameras around their neck, it's me, and it's worth it by the end of each day!

  4. Terrific post. Good to hear such positive facts about DAK.

  5. Thanks Snow White Archives, there were so many interesting facts to sift through, I will have plenty of info for many more Earth Days!


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