VIDEO: Toledo Zoo welcomes adorable baby giraffe

(Source: Toledo Zoo)
(Source: Toledo Zoo)

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Move over, April - There's a new giraffe in town!

The Toledo Zoo welcomed its newest family member, a female baby Masai giraffe named Kipenzi, on April 3. The name is fitting since it means "beloved" or "precious one" in Swahli. And boy is she precious!

Kipenzi weighs in at 130 pounds and is 67 inches tall! Both baby and mother, Elli, are doing well and bonding outside of their exhibit.

According to the Zoo, visitors will not be able to see the giraffes until an examination clears the pair for their debut.

Some fun facts about giraffes:

  • Giraffes (Giraffa camelopardalis) are the tallest land mammals, standing 14-18 feet tall as adults.
  • There are nine recognized sub-species of giraffes from all across southern and eastern Africa.
  • Each giraffe has a unique spot pattern, but giraffes from the same geographical area appear similar.
  • The Toledo Zoo’s Masai giraffes (Giraffa camelopardalis tippelskirchi) are native to Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania and have distinct oak leaf spot patterns that serve as camouflage in the African plains.
  • Giraffes typically give birth standing up.
  • The offspring are known as calves and are born front feet and head first. The calf takes a dramatic but not harmful approximate six foot fall to the ground, causing it to take in a big deep breath.
  • After about an hour the calf can walk and nurse and will begin eating vegetation at around a week old.

Once on public display, the giraffes will join zebras, wildebeests, kudus, warthogs and more in the Africa! exhibit on the North Side of the Zoo.

The zoo is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Buy tickets here.

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