Imagine your baby doing cartwheels in the womb right before giving birth. Not exactly a comfortable scenario, right? Well, that’s exactly what April the giraffe’s spotted little bundle of joy is doing right now as it prepares to make a debut any moment at the Animal Adventure Park. Fox2 reports that April’s Zookeepers say that her belly is now oval shaped and has dropped. They added that the calf appears to be doing cartwheels in the giraffe mamma’s distended belly.
The Zookeepers also indicated that April the giraffe still has an appetite, but past hay throwing activities she indulges in has slowed down a bit. Fox 25 added a morning update today where Animal Adventure Park speculated on their Facebook page that “maybe April’s mind is elsewhere“as she prepares for impending labor. After all, she is meeting her calf for the first time, along with millions of YouTube viewers that are tuning in for the big moment.
Animal Adventure Park additionally reported a cute giraffe factoid on their Facebook page:
Giraffes have long thought to have been silent; however it was recently proven giraffes will hum to one another, outside of human hearing capacity range. Is April “”talking”” to her baby?
A Little Background as the World Counts Down
April the giraffe became a viral sensation last month when Animal Adventure Park launched a live cam via Facebook and YouTube to document the birth of her fourth child. Since that time, numerous memes have been made in her honor and Facebook even temporarily kicked the live cam footage off of their site after complaints about it being “sexually explicit.”
As a result, Animal Adventure Park quickly moved the live stream to YouTube. Now, after almost a month, a lot of excitement, some controversy and millions of views, park officials have indicated that April appears to finally be ready to go into active labor.
Jordan Patch, the owner of Animal Adventure Park, posted a video to YouTube earlier this month to indicate that the long delay was caused by an error in the timeline. In other words, no, April isn’t a month past due at this point. Instead, now is probably the time to tune into YouTube if you want to see the birth instead of merely reading about it after the fact.
The Latest News from Animal Adventure Park
April’s YouTube adventure may soon come to a happy ending because her back end has experienced an increase in swelling. Additionally, the baby has been kicking a significant amount. When these factors are combined with April doing what park staff refers to as “posturing,” it looks like labor may actually be close to starting!
The staff will keep the live cam operational on YouTube throughout the entire process. However, it’s important to note that they regularly need to stop the current stream and start a new one due to size and time restrictions placed upon them by YouTube. In other words, if the video feed you access is down, it’s best to go to the Animal Adventure Park YouTube page to find the current live stream.
What to Expect When YouTube Shows the Live Birth
April is 15 years old, and she has already had three successful births. April’s partner, Oliver, is five, and this is his first time becoming a father. Because male giraffes, also known as bulls, are not involved in the process of raising their young, don’t expect to see Oliver attending to April or passing out the giraffe equivalent of cigars. Instead, Oliver will be kept in a separate pen so that April will have the time and space she needs to give birth.
Animal Adventure Park staff has indicated on their YouTube feed that the baby will come out hooves first. Next, viewers should be able to see the newborn’s snout. From the moment of birth, giraffes weigh approximately 150 pounds and are able to stand. After a drop of 6 feet from the womb, though, it may take about an hour for the infant to begin standing and walking comfortably.
After YouTube shows the world April’s labor and birth, Animal Adventure Park staff will enter the pen and provide the exhausted mother some treats. Next, they will clean the pen so that April and her new child will have a nice place to relax.
April is expected to nurse the baby for a minimum of six months, and Animal Adventure Park has indicated that she will be given as long as she’d like to go through the weaning process. However, after this is completed, the mother and child will need to be separated. This is done to prevent in-breeding.
Tune in live throughout the weekend to hopefully catch a glimpse of a live giraffe birth! Put your creative thinking hat on as well because you might win some serious bragging rights. Animal Adventure Park will begin a naming contest for the baby after everyone gets their first look on YouTube.
According to Fox 31, Animal Adventure Park has launched a GoFundMe campaign to help with the annual upkeep of the giraffes.
[Featured Image by Patrick B. Kraemer/AP Images]