Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo Gives a Sneak Peek of Its Newest Baby Giraffe

·2 min read

Henry Doorly Zoo has welcomed its newest addition!

Officials at the zoo in Omaha, Nebraska, revealed Tuesday that a baby giraffe was born over the weekend. He stands about 6 feet tall and weighs around 140 pounds.

The calf is the 10th to be born at the zoo and the first to be born since April 2019.

He's also the first baby for his 10-year-old mom, Betty Francis. Zookeepers told reporters on Tuesday that Betty is doing great adjusting to life as a new mom.

She's "very attentive" and makes sure her baby has what he needs. Meanwhile, the unnamed calf "has a mind of its own," zoo officials said.

Baby Giraffe
Baby Giraffe

KMTV 3 News Now

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He stood on his own about an hour after birth and has been checking out his surroundings ever since. The baby is currently being housed separately from the rest of the herd, so zoogoers won't be able to spot him outside just yet.

The zoo plans to hold a naming contest for the calf at the Zoofari fundraiser on September 10. The highest bidder will get to decide what the baby is called.

While he'll stay in Omaha for the time being, it's not likely the calf will end up with a permanent home at the Henry Doorly Zoo, officials added.

Baby Giraffe
Baby Giraffe

KMTV 3 News Now

Since he's a male, the baby giraffe will probably end up going to another zoo where he can breed.

The new giraffe is a reticulated giraffe, a subspecies of the animal typically found in Somalia, southern Ethiopia, and northern Kenya. There are only about 11,000 - 16,000 reticulated giraffe left in Africa, according to the zoo.

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In addition to breeding reticulated giraffe, the zoo also works with the Giraffe Conservation Foundation, "the only non-governmental organization in the world that concentrates solely on wild giraffe conservation across Africa."

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