Autumn, the Greenville Zoo’s nine-year-old Masai giraffe, gave birth at approximately 6:15 a.m. this morning. Both Autumn and the calf are doing well, and the zoo’s medical staff has been monitoring the calf to ensure that it is meeting important benchmarks, such as standing and nursing successfully. In the next 24 to 48 hours, the staff will perform a routine neonatal exam on the calf, which will include determining the calf’s height, weight and sex. Blood tests will also be used to determine whether the calf is receiving important antibodies from Autumn’s milk. Walter, the calf’s father, will remain separated from Autumn and their baby for the next few weeks to allow time for mother and calf to bond without interruption, and time for the calf to gain the strength to endure the curiosity of its father.
“The birth went off without a hitch and the Greenville Zoo was once again able to share this special event with EarthCam viewers around the world,” said Greenville Zoo Administrator Jeff Bullock. “We hope that this exposure will help people connect with giraffes, want to learn more about them and help us support giraffe conservation efforts in the wild and in accredited zoos across the nation.”
Since the zoo is closed for maintenance this week and next, zoo officials have decided to allow the public to continue submitting male and female baby names online until Thursday, February 11 at 12 p.m. Click here to submit names online and go to the green GET TICKETS link to start the submission. Once the contest closes, zookeepers will select a favorite from the submitted names. Zoo officials are planning to hold a news conference on Friday, February 12 to introduce the calf, and announce its name, as well as its sex and vital statistics. In the meantime, the public can follow the calf’s progress via the Giraffe Cam at http://www.greenvillezoofoundation.org/giraffecam and the Greenville Zoo’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/greenvillezoo/.
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