Gladys Porter Zoo staff are excited to introduce two new babies at the Zoo: a dromedary camel and a reticulated giraffe. Both babies made their debut on exhibit this week.
The healthy male giraffe was born to parents Priscilla and CJ on June 14, 2021. Now one month old, he joins another calf in the giraffe yard that was born just a few months ago.
Reticulated giraffes, like the ones at the Zoo, are listed as Endangered with an estimate of less than 10,000 remaining in the wild. Their numbers have decreased by 50% in the last three decades.
“Any birth of these magnificent animals is an event, but hopefully it will help us sustain a population that will need help in the future. Their future survival in the wild is grim unless all of us band together to celebrate the births of our giraffes and learn what we can all do to help them,” states Walter Dupree, Curator of Mammals.
Another exciting birth was that of the male dromedary camel, born on March 16, 2021. The calf has been behind the scenes with its mother but can now be seen on exhibit.
The calf’s parents, Jenny and Cotton, are both first-time parents. The gestation period for camels is around 12-14 months. The female will typically find a quiet spot to have her young and will not rejoin the rest of the herd until after the baby is several weeks old.
“For a first-time mom, Jenny has been doing a great job. Her maternal instincts kicked in immediately which is the best case scenario we could hope for. It’s always best for the parents to raise their young rather than staff having to step in,” says Dupree.
Zoo staff are inviting everyone to come out and see both babies on exhibit.
For more information, visit www.gpz.org.