Sadness at giraffe death

DZG is sad to announce the death of a newborn giraffe.

The female Rothschild calf was born to mum, Mia and dad, Kubwa at 1am on Friday, August 17.

When keepers arrived for duty at 7.30am she was unable to stand, was not feeding and failing to respond. Despite their best efforts nothing could be done to save the calf.

Assistant Curator, Richard Brown said: “Video footage shows the baby being born in the very early hours, but when we arrived in the giraffe house a few hours later she was still unable to get to her feet; newborn giraffes should stand and move around within the first few hours of birth. 

“It is heartbreaking when this happens, especially after such a long pregnancy.”

Giraffe gestation lasts 15 months and keepers are hopeful first-time mum Mia will reproduce soon. 

Clearly upset

Journalist Rachel Hickman visited the giraffe house on Saturday morning.

She said: “I was on site when the vet arrived – there was such a strange atmosphere. 

“The keepers were clearly upset, but it was how the three giraffes reacted which got to me. 

“You could tell the exact moment the calf was put to sleep as Mia started to fling her neck back and pace inside, Josie went straight over to the stall door where the baby was and hung her head over, while Kubwa walked to the middle of the paddock and stood stock still fixated on the house. 

“Really eerie, but so sad.”