On may 4th we went to the Desert Museum after we visited the San Xavier mission. The museum was entirely outdoor and featured some incredible wildlife exhibits. In addition to the wildlife that was specifically displayed in exhibits, there were also several animals free roaming the zoo, such as lizards and what seemed to be desert squirrels.
What I appreciated the most about this zoo was how close I was able to get to some incredible predators such as bobcats, Mexican wolves, and a mountain lion. The zoo solidified for me that the Tohono O’odham’s home is shared with some beautiful creatures, but also home to some incredibly dangerous species.
In addition to the wildlife at the zoo, the gift shop also had some authentic Tohono O’odham baskets for sale. I’ve been hoping to buy something like that while I am here, but I thought that they might be cheaper at a local store instead of a gift shop at a museum. At first, I was startled by how expensive the large baskets are (some were up to $700), but I realized that these baskets are all hand woven with care, and surely take an incredible time commitment to complete. Hopefully, I will find somewhere else on the reservation to buy a small basket to give to my mom for Mother’s Day.