A Mini-Safari on Washington Island

Photo by Matt Ledger.

At Double K-W Ostrich & Exotic Animal Farm, any trip to Washington Island can be turned into a mini-safari. There’s a checklist of exciting and mysterious animals just waiting there for you to discover (and pet!) them.

After being greeted by a wonderful attendant who will show you just how big an ostrich egg really is (hint – it’s pretty big) you’ll happen upon the bird itself. There’s food available for you to feed the feathered beasts, but watch out! Make sure you hold your hand flat, or you’ll get it pinched like your humble and foolish author did.

Next you’ll come upon a variety of four-legged wonders, including pot-bellied pigs, camels, water buffalo, pygmy goats, and the incredible zonkey. A zonkey is pretty much exactly what you would think it is, a cross between a zebra and a donkey, and it’s a fantastic-looking little oddity.

All of these animals will beg you for food, meeting your gaze with pleading eyes that you will not be able to resist. They are just too cute so don’t even try. The only thing you can do is make sure you ration your supply so that you don’t feel guilty when passing by the goat pen at the end.

If you can stomach the thought of eating an ostrich just after meeting one in person, Double K-W sells ostrich sticks, burgers, and steaks, and you can even take home your own ostrich egg to do with what you will. Personally, after watching the ostriches’ bend their twisty heads around and poke out in-between the holes in their fence to say hello, I couldn’t bring myself to buy an ostrich stick.

I like to think that the ostriches appreciated that.

Double K-W Animal Farm is located at 1928 West Harbor Road, Washington Island. For more information call 920.847.3202.