Giraffe Calf Wilf Celebrates First Father's Day at Whipsnade Zoo


The Animal Facts Editorial Team


June 14, 2023 8:46 pm


The Whipsnade Zoo, The United Kingdom

Zookeepers at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo have shared touching images showcasing the bond between their giraffe calf Wilfred and his father Bashu ahead of their first father's day together at the UK's largest zoo.

Bashu and Wilfred share lunch together with the father patiently waiting for his son to enjoy some of the bark and leaves before taking his own.

Affectionately known as Wilf by keepers, the calf was born in November last year to Bashu and mother Luna. Despite being a junior giraffe the calf still towers above keepers already standing 8ft 8in tall.

“He’s still got a way to go till he reaches his dad’s height of 16ft, but Wilf is growing and learning every day,” said giraffe keeper Mark Holden.  

“As a youngster, he’s still curious about everything and is surprisingly independent - he loves zooming around in the summer sun as Bashu looks on. When Wilf has tired himself out, you’ll often see him lounging in the shade or stopping for a quick drink at the watering hole with mum Luna and grandma Ijuma.”

Giraffe are an endangered species in the wild with ZSL Whispande Zoo's herd forming part of an international conservation project to secure a future for the threatened species. Alongside their work at the zoo ZSL work on the ground in habitats around the world to secure a future for wild animals.


Mark added: “It’s vital that conservation zoos across the world collaboratively care for a healthy, strong and genetically diverse population of reticulated giraffes, which are classified as Endangered on the IUCN Red List of threatened species. Sadly, in the wild, reticulated giraffe populations continue to decline in their native Africa due to habitat loss, illegal hunting and conflict in unstable areas.”  

Giraffe Calf Wilf Celebrates Father's Day at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo

Image: © ZSL Whipsnade Zoo

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More on the Giraffe!

Learn more about the world's tallest land mammal with our fact file on the giraffe.

Our Favourite Giraffe Fact!

Males fight to establish dominance. They will stand next to one another and swing their heads at the opponents side. A strong enough blow may knock their opponent over or injure them.

Image: © ZSL Whipsnade Zoo

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