The male was born on March 16 at Animal Adventure Park in New York

By Kate Hogan
March 22, 2019 02:06 PM
Credit: S. Pero

Hair! Weight gain! Big strides! April the giraffe’s new calf, born on March 16 at Animal Adventure Park in Harpursville, New York, is making great progress.

On March 18, Adventure Park staff posted an update on Facebook, sharing that the newborn male was already up 5 lbs. from the day before. “To us, this means mom is producing milk and baby is nursing successfully,” they wrote.

His ossicones (antler-like protrusions) have stood up on his head, he’s stretched his legs in full stride and galloped and even bonded with his dad Oliver (below). “[April] certainly has her hooves full with this one,” Adventure Park staff joked.

Credit: Courtesy Animal Adventure Park

As of March 20, the calf was still successfully gaining weight — but doesn’t have a name. To solve that problem, Animal Adventure Park — which reopens to the public for the season around May 1 — is running a naming contest, just as they did with April’s last calf, Tajiri.

Fans can visit to submit their favorite monikers for $1 per vote. Funds raised will benefit giraffe conservation initiatives, local children’s charity Ava’s Little Heroes and Animal Adventure Park.

“Every calf born counts,” Adventure Park staff explained on Facebook. “With wild giraffe populations plummeting, now more than ever, successes in responsible propagation programs are continuing to provide strong genetic diversity in captive management programs. These bloodlines are the future bloodlines that can reestablish wild populations.”

But for now, the focus is on the days-old calf, who is “learning the daily routine and allowing our team to get hands-on, to perform wellness checks and record necessary data.”

Fans can watch the little guy and his mom anytime on the giraffe cam via YouTube.