Livestream: April The Giraffe Keeps World Waiting; No Baby Yet
HARPURSVILLE, NY — April, the giraffe that shot to international fame in 2017 with a seemingly never-ending pregnancy, is expected to give birth to her fifth calf momentarily. On Saturday evening, the Animal Adventure Park in Harpursville said physical and behavioral signs indicate “we are simply waiting for the big moment.”
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The park said she was “standing in one place, staring at the wall and simply not responding to activity around her.”
“Without question, we are there,” the park said in the update. “It’s a matter of when.”
Extra bedding was placed in April’s stall in anticipation of the birth, which could occur overnight.
The zoo said all signs show that the birth of the newest baby giraffe is close. Tens of thousands of people are watching the famous giraffe in her stall on YouTube and other sites. You can keep track right here on Patch.
“Udders are filled, consistent discharge, calf has shifted around a bit! Back end is swollen, ligaments loosened, tail raising and to the side a bit,” the zoo wrote on Facebook Saturday. “These are all signs we are there!”
An experienced mother, April, 17, reached her long neck around to the birth canal Thursday afternoon and also spent time cleaning the udder area. She also was pacing in the early evening, “which is a tell-tale sign of what’s to come,” the park wrote on Facebook. “This should continue to increase.”
In 2017, when April was pregnant with her fourth calf, keepers at the petting zoo speculated she would give birth two months before she actually did. She shot to international fame.
On Wednesday, the Animal Adventure Park said on Facebook the giraffe calf’s birth was imminent. Her udders had filled and keepers noticed a discharge consistent with an impending birth.
As the day progressed, April kept keepers on edge with “lots of tail raising” and “obvious calf repositioning,” animal care workers said.
Her udders were comparable in size to what they were in the days prior to Taj’s birth in 2017. She also appeared more “needy” and “standoffish,” encouraging signs to the veterinarian, according to the Facebook post.
The discharge, the post said, is “a good indication were are ‘there.’ ” But there was a qualifier — “there” could mean hours, a day or even longer.
What the animal park did promise is “it won’t be two months of waiting!”
April came to Animal Adventure Park in August 2015 and has given birth four times. She’s about 15 feet tall.
You can learn more about April’s seemingly never-ending 2017 pregnancy.
A typical gestation period for a giraffe is about 15 months — the longest of any mammal on Earth. They give birth while standing up, meanig a calf falls bout six feet to the ground, hooves and head first.
But don’t be alarmed about giraffe calves’ abrupt entry into the world. The fall breaks the amniotic sac and severs the umbilical cord, but most important, according to Animal Palnet is that it “encourages the calf to take its first breaths.”
Once April does give birth, she will immediately begin cleaning off the newborn, and it will within minutes attempt its first steps.
Video used with permission of Animal Adventure Park