The Sacramento Zoo recently welcomed some of the cutest critters. Shani the giraffe gave birth to a healthy calf on January 22, 2023, to the delight of zookeepers and animal lovers on social media. Just one day later, the zoo released a pair of adorable images of baby giraffes. A zoo official said, "We are very happy to report that the calf, Shani, is healthy and well-nourished by her mother."
Zookeepers weren't entirely sure about her pregnancy and didn't fully realise it until a few days after she gave birth. Shani was transferred to the maternity ward for observation only on January 18th.
“Animal care experts and veterinarians suspected that not only was she not on her original schedule, she could still be pregnant, but she had no clear signs until very recently,” they added in the announcement. Six giraffes live at the Sacramento Zoo as the calf is born. Shani's baby is also the 21st calf born at the Sacramento Zoo since the Sacramento Zoo was introduced to the area in 1954.
Despite being only a few days old, the little giraffe is getting ready to get to scout the grounds. “Shani and her calf have been spending time together inside the giraffe barn, and it sure looks like our little gal has found her legs and is ready to explore a little further!” the zoo's team wrote in the caption of a video.
“Starting tomorrow, the pair will have the opportunity to venture out into the sideyard just off the main giraffe habitat near the barn. The ability to see them will be weather dependent, and mom and calf will always have the choice whether to stay in the barn or come outside.”
An official debut day for the creature will be announced sometime in the future. It is, however, subject to the health and welfare of both mom and baby. Not only do they have to spend time together, but they also have to introduce the baby to other giraffes. In the meantime, lucky people might even get a chance to catch a glimpse of a baby giraffe. According to the zoo, the best time to see them is between 11 am and noon. “After this initial trial period, we will continue to learn about the rest of the herd and mothers and calves will eventually have access to the entire yard.”