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Virginia Zoo Wants You to Help Name Their Giraffe Calf

Posted By : The Animal Facts Editorial Team

Date: June 2, 2020 3:30 pm

Photo Credit: Virginia Zoo

Virginia Zoo’s Masai giraffe herd has just gotten bigger with the birth of a healthy male calf on May 26th 2020. The male calf was born to mum, Noelle and dad Billy.

Noelle has proven to be a great mother and is nursing the calf regularly and spending time bonding with her calf.

When the calf was 24 hours old he was seen by vets who performed a neonatal exam to check that the calf was healthy and receiving adequate care from mum. Vets assessed the calf as being healthy.

During his exam he was also seen to be incredibly strong. Giraffe calves are required to stand up and start to run or walk not long after birth. This assists them on the savanna where predators are abundant and a giraffe calf would provide good prey for a carnivore.

Photo Credit: Virginia Zoo

Virginia Zoo is now home to a herd of 5 giraffes with Noelle, Billy and the calf living with two other females known as Imara and Kelly. Kelly is a half brother of the new calf with her father also being Billy.

At present the calf has not got a name. This is something keepers hope the public can help with while also helping to fund their work during the Covid-19 closure.

For $5 anyone is welcome to submit a name suggestion before June 7th. Keepers will then pick their 8 favourite names and have the calf’s father, Billy help them select the final name for the calf. The zoo is keeping their cards close to their chest on how a giraffe will choose a name.You can watch Billy pick the name and learn how he will do it on June 9th as part of the zoo’s virtual voyage.

You can submit your name suggestion here till June 7th – 2020 Giraffe Naming

Photo Credit: Virginia Zoo

This breeding is part of the Species Survival Plan (SSP) managed by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). This program aims to create a healthy and self-sustaining population of Masai giraffe in zoos to ensure that they are around for generations to come.

The Masai giraffe is an endangered species which is threatened by habitat loss and poaching so each birth is important for the future of the species.

You can learn more about giraffes here – Giraffe | The Animal Facts

You can learn more about Virginia Zoo here – Virginia Zoo Website

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