Posted on 04th April 2019 by Media Relations
Keepers at Taronga Western Plains Zoo have been patiently awaiting the arrival of a third Giraffe calf. It has now joined the herd in Dubbo, born in the early hours of the morning on Monday 25 March 2019.
The male calf was born to experienced mother Ntombi and sired by Unami. This is the fifth calf for Ntombi and the 25th calf sired by Unami at Taronga Western Plains Zoo.
“The rainy weather overnight on Sunday 24 March may have played a role in the birth as when we arrived at work on Monday morning there was the newborn calf with mum,” said Giraffe Keeper, Nick Bourke.
This is the third Giraffe calf born this year with a male and female calf being born on 16 and 28 January respectively.
“All three calves are doing well. The two older calves are growing in confidence and it won’t be too long before the newest member of the herd follows suit and starts interacting with them,” said Nick.
“Having three Giraffe calves on exhibit will be a really great sight to see for visitors over the school holidays. If they are lucky they might see the trio having a gallop around the paddock.”
The Giraffe calves are like any other newborn, being active for a period of time and then resting. The best time to see them is in the mornings when they are generally more active.
“This will be our breeding bull Unami’s last calf as he will be retiring from breeding and joining our bachelor group out on the African Savannah exhibit later this year. A new male will arrive in the coming months to create a new genetic blood line in the regional Giraffe population,” said Nick.
Taronga Western Plains Zoo has also welcomed its fourth Spider Monkey baby. The newest addition was born on 24 February 2019.
The baby was born to first time mum Havana who is showing all the right maternal behaviours, caring and nursing her baby.
At present the baby is clinging tightly to mum’s tummy but will soon start to look around more and reach out to explore nearby items from the comfort and protection of mum. Over the next few months the baby will then start to interact more with the other members of the group, including the older juveniles.
“There are so many new arrivals to see these school holidays with the Giraffe calves and Spider Monkey baby but also Asian Elephant calf Kanlaya is now a very confident young elephant and is exploring her surrounds and interacting with older cousin Sabai, which is great to see.”