Texas zoo welcomes baby giraffe, holds contest to choose calf’s name

WACO, Texas — A Texas zoo welcomed a new baby Masai giraffe last week.

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According to the Waco Tribune-Herald, the unnamed male calf, whose parents are Penelope and Dane, was born shortly after 4 p.m. Jan. 22 at the Cameron Park Zoo in Waco. The baby, who stands 6 feet tall and weighs 135 pounds, is Penelope’s first, the zoo said in a Facebook post Wednesday.

Cameron Park Zoo is excited to announce that Penelope, the zoo’s female Masai giraffe, gave birth to her first calf, a...

Posted by Cameron Park Zoo on Wednesday, January 27, 2021

The newborn’s arrival marks the zoo’s first giraffe birth in 20 years and the first-ever Masai birth there, officials said.

“Penelope is exhibiting some difficulty in allowing the calf to nurse for extended periods of time, so Cameron Park Zoo’s Animal Care staff is closely monitoring the calf’s health in order to provide supportive care if necessary,” the Facebook post continued, adding that in a few days, the baby will be able to play in the exhibit yard with other animals, such as DJ, a 2-month-old greater kudu.

The zoo also announced it is holding a contest through Feb. 10 to select the newborn’s name. For $5 per ticket, participants can submit a vote for one of three names: Zeke, Prince and Duke. The money will benefit the Giraffe Conservation Foundation, the zoo wrote on its website.

>> Click here to participate in the contest

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