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Buffalo Zoo welcomes baby giraffe

by jmaloni


Wed, Feb 25th 2015 08:50 am
Zuri (Photo by Buffalo Zoo registrar Kelly Ann Brown)
Zuri (Photo by Buffalo Zoo registrar Kelly Ann Brown)

The Buffalo Zoo is celebrating the birth of a female giraffe.

The baby was born Saturday to 20-year-old Agnes. The baby's father is 3-year-old Moke, who also sired Sampson, a male giraffe born to mother A.J. in October. 

The Buffalo Zoo's keeper staff has named the baby Zuri, a Swahili word meaning beautiful or lovely. Zuri weighed 112 pounds at birth.

The giraffe house will be closed temporarily, as Agnes takes some time to bond with her baby, and the herd adjusts to her presence. Zoo visitors will be able to enter the vestibule of the giraffe house and view the animals through the windows.

The gestation period of giraffes is around 15 months. Calves usually remain with their mothers until they are around 22 months old.

Giraffes are native to the plains of Africa. The number of giraffes in the wild has dropped from 140,000 in 1999 to fewer than 80,000 today. The decreasing population is attributed to poaching, disease and loss of natural habitat.

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