Como Zoo Welcomes New Baby Giraffe

SAINT PAUL, MN (August 11, 2010) – Como Zoo is excited to welcome a new baby giraffe to its herd. Coming in at 5 foot 6 inches, 145 pounds, the baby is standing tall & ready to meet his adoring fans.

The new baby boy is the 4th calf born to mom, Daisy. The father, Jahari, sadly past away in January from urolithiasis (crystals in the bladder causing urinary blockage). Jahari was a very prolific male with 24 offspring that can be seen across the country at other Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) institutions. “Hopefully he will grow up to be just like his father, who was truly a gentle giant.” said Jo Kelly, Como’s Senior Zoo Keeper.

This is Como’s 13th giraffe birth in the last 17 years. Como’s current herd consists of baby boy, mom Daisy, and another female, Clover. No name has been given to the baby giraffe yet.

The giraffe is the tallest of all land-living animal species. They can be as tall as 18 feet tall and have a prehensile (used for grasping) tongue as long as 18 inches. During the first two years of a giraffe’s life, it doubles it height and can be over 12-feet tall. Giraffe gestation lasts between 14 and 15 months, after which a single calf is born. Like human fingerprints, the markings or spots of a giraffe’s coat are unique to each individual. Reticulated giraffes are native to the dry savannahs and open woodlands of sub-Saharan Africa.

Como Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). AZA is America’s leading accrediting organization for zoos and aquariums, and accredits only those institutions that have achieved rigorous, professional standards for animal welfare and management, vet car, wildlife conservation and research, education, safety, staffing and more. With only 200 accredited members, AZA is building North America’s largest wildlife conservation movement and is your link to helping animals in their native habitats.