These images show the adorable giraffe Ka that the self-proclaimed world’s oldest zoo has welcomed over the weekend.
The footage shows the mother giraffe giving birth to its baby and the first moments of its life as it gingerly stands on its unsteady legs and takes in its new surroundings.
The baby giraffe was born to mother Fleur and father Obi at Schoenbrunn Zoo in the Austrian capital Vienna.
The zoo said in a statement obtained by Newsflash: “A female giraffe cub was born in Schoenbrunn Zoo on Sunday afternoon. Great concern quickly mixed with joy: first-time mother Fleur has been reluctant to let her offspring feed.”
Eveline Dungl, head of the zoological department, said: “The birth went quickly and without complications, which is anything but a matter of course. Unfortunately, Fleur still keeps her young baby at a distance and only nurses it very irregularly.”
She added: “For Fleur, it is the first offspring. Unfortunately, inexperienced mothers often find themselves overwhelmed with rearing in the wild. Unfortunately, especially with first-time mothers, there is never a guarantee that everything will go well from the start.”
The zoo said: “The primary goal at Schoenbrunn Zoo is to enable the animals to be reared naturally by their parents. Since Sunday, the herd of giraffes has been under observation by the team around the clock and their behaviour is being analysed.”
Zoo Director Stephan Hering-Hagenbeck said: “After intensive consultations with all our experts, we decided to leave the young animal in the social group of the herd and to feed it. Of course, certain risks cannot be ruled out. However, while the young animal is not yet able to feed from its mother regularly, this is the most promising solution.”
The zoo added: “The female, still nameless giraffe cub was around 1.70 metres (5’7″) tall at birth. The last giraffe offspring in the zoo was almost 10 years ago. The giraffe park was then renovated and reopened in 2017 with the reticulated giraffes Fleur and Sofie. In 2019, Obi, the cub’s father, moved in.”
The zoo explained that the giraffe park is currently closed, so as to give its newest member some breathing space. The zoo said: “It is important now to give the young, inexperienced herd plenty of rest and time. They should get used to the new situation and be able to absorb this experience together. Therefore, the giraffe park will remain closed until further notice.”
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