The latest April the Giraffe updates suggest that the animal, whose pregnancy has gone viral in recent weeks, may be about to give birth within the next few days or so.
Since February 23 of this year, the world has been patiently waiting for April the Giraffe to give birth. With Harpursville, New York’s Animal Adventure Park keeping people updated with a live stream, millions of people have tuned in to the so-called “giraffe cam,” hoping to witness something stunning as it happens – a 15-year-old mother giraffe giving birth to her fourth calf.
There’s no questioning how quickly these April the Giraffe updates and live video streams have gone viral, and how April has become a pop culture sensation of sorts in the weeks that were. One example of this was pregnant South Carolina woman Erin Dietrich’s April parody, where she live-streamed herself pacing around her room wearing a giraffe mask. According to KTLA, Dietrich’s “giraffe mom” live stream had gotten 30 million views since it was posted, and on Wednesday night, she gave birth to a baby boy named Porter.
— Rivertown Jill (@RivertownJill) March 9, 2017
As for the real giraffe, yesterday morning’s April the Giraffe update had suggested that April and her mate Oliver are still cooped inside Animal Adventure Park, with the female giraffe in “great condition.” The park’s official Facebook page posted a photo of April’s udder, showing wax caps having developed and explaining what these caps signify for pregnant animals.
“Wax caps are what develops on the teats of the udder to keep colostrum in the udder, to ensure it is their [sic] for baby’s first nursing. Colostrum is a form of milk that is produced and holds the many antibodies and other essentials to allow any new baby to thrive.”
The Animal Adventure Park added that there had been “significant baby/belly movement” early Sunday morning between 3 and 4 a.m., and also around 7 a.m.
More recent April the Giraffe updates suggest that while there haven’t been too many significant changes as of this morning, the baby bump is still “clearly visible” on the giraffe cam. NBC Dallas-Fort Worth detailed this observation earlier today, describing how April was chewing on food in her darkened pen, with Oliver appearing fast asleep in his own quarters. At that time, there were over 36,000 people watching the live stream, proving that the world is still eagerly awaiting the birth of April’s calf, even in the early morning hours at Harpursville.
— Us Weekly (@usweekly) March 13, 2017
As of 8:36 a.m. ET, Animal Adventure Park posted a new update, suggesting that April’s calf is quite active inside her belly, further adding to the likelihood she may be giving birth soon. The zoo, however, cautioned of potential weather disturbances in the new week that may make it harder to track April’s progress.
“We start another week without a calf! There is no question that April is looking larger than ever. Morning keeper check reports active kicking and noticeable growth/drop in belly.
“Significant snow storm heading our way early tomorrow morning. The team is preparing accordingly – as we do – with any weather activity of concern.”
Although people around the world have largely been appreciative of the constant reports on the status of April the Giraffe’s pregnancy, the updates didn’t sit too well with animal rights activists, the New York Post wrote last month. On the morning of February 23, the giraffe cam’s live feed was taken off the air by YouTube, as animal rights activists had flagged the video for being sexually explicit. In a statement, Animal Adventure Park owner Jordan Patch decried the action, saying that YouTube’s move is the reason people “cannot have nice things.”
“There’s a handful of extremists and animal rights activists that may not agree with us and that’s okay. What (the video’s flagging) has done is pulled an educational tool away from tens of millions of individuals. We’re further harming the species of giraffes.”
Despite the giraffe cam’s brief absence, it was back on YouTube just one hour later, and people are waiting with bated breath for the next April the Giraffe updates to get posted on Facebook. The baby is expected to stand about six feet tall and weigh 150 pounds once it is born, and while no names have been mooted by Animal Adventure Park officials, the zoo did announce that it will be leaving it all up to the public and will hold an online contest to choose the calf’s name.
[Featured Image by ZU_09/iStock]