Baby Giraffe Drops In At San Diego Zoo
June 05, 2016
The San Diego Zoo’s Masai Giraffe herd grew with the addition of a male calf at the end of May.
The newborn calf stood six feet tall and tipped the scales at 146 pounds. Like all Giraffes, Harriet, the calf’s mother, gave birth to her baby while standing up. The baby emerges front feet first and drops to the ground. The fall helps separate the calf from the placenta and stimulates breathing.
Masai Giraffes are one of nine Giraffe subspecies that range across Africa. Populations have fallen by nearly half in the last decades to about 80,000 individuals today, mainly due to habitat loss. Giraffes must also compete with livestock for resources. In some parts of Africa, armed conflicts have complicated conservation efforts and put Giraffes further at risk.