By Kathleen Kraemer
On Saturday April 15 around 9 a.m. with approximately 1.2 million people watching, April the Giraffe finally gave birth to her fourth calf.
Since mid-February, the internet has been at the edge of its collective seat watching and waiting with anticipation for April to give birth. April is a resident of Animal Adventure Park in Harpursville, New York. She has delivered 3 other calves in her 15 years, but this calf was the first to be born at Animal Adventure Park.
When the live feed was first posted, there was a mixed response. Most people were excited by the prospect of getting to see this unusual animal give birth, but others were displeased.
The live feed was briefly removed after it was reported by Youtube users for being allegedly inappropriate, but was quickly reinstated when Youtube moderators found the claims to be false. Over the subsequent months, millions of viewers checked in daily to see if she was in active labor.
Giraffes do their best to hide signs of labor, because being in labor is generally a major disadvantage in the wild. Giraffe gestation is approximately 15 months long, so staff at Animal Adventure Park guesstimated the approximate.
The baby boy weighed 129 lbs and was 5’9 at birth. He stood up 45 minutes after birth and has been happily galloping around the stall since. Because of the massively positive response to the calf’s birth, Animal Adventure Park is letting the internet vote on his name. Votes are $1 each, and the proceeds go towards supporting the new giraffe family.
April’s calf will remain at the park for the next six months and then will be sent to another park to avoid incestuous breeding.
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