Ready, Set, Giraffe

The Hattiesburg Zoo is reaching new heights in 2020! Construction continues on the giraffe exhibit, a new cantina sponsored by Keithco, and a new special event pavilion. Most of the building exteriors are complete on the three structures visible from Hardy Street, allowing for attention to be focused on interior finishes, as well as outfitting each area for its purpose.

“On the giraffe barn, we are installing the penning systems as well as the feeding stations, which will be at a height of about 12 feet,” said Rick Taylor, Executive Director of the Hattiesburg Convention Commission. “Refrigeration, sinks, tables and other equipment will need to be installed over the next couple of months. Giraffe care equipment is to be installed, including a scale, as well as other general care tools.”

The new cantina will soon be outfitted with restaurant kitchen equipment. Located above the cantina will be a special event reception area, with a range of outdoor lounge seating, a communal table, and an outdoor bar and grill, all adjacent to the giraffe feeding station. What is not seen, but under construction, is a new hyena exhibit and holding, the addition of a fourth tiger viewing area, as well as a new holding for servals and lemurs. The beginning stages of a nearby DeBrazza’s monkey holding is also underway. 

Because the giraffes will be moved on occasion to an existing African veldt, the zoo will be reworking the veldt fence completely to allow for the addition of new antelope species, and other animals in this area. One of the final steps is to replace the fence near Hardy Street with a taller, more attractive, perimeter fence to complement the new facilities. The new fencing will fit within the City’s beautification plan for Hardy Street.

The zoo is currently seeking additional sponsors for these new exhibits and spaces, so please feel free to reach out if your company is interested. To stay updated on the expansion progress, please follow the Hattiesburg Zoo on Facebook, or visit 


The Hattiesburg Zoo is a Hattiesburg Convention Commission Facility, in partnership with the City of Hattiesburg. Since 1991, the Hattiesburg Convention Commission has been creating and operating high quality-of-life attractions for the Hattiesburg area. 

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