Giraffe baby watch is officially underway and according to new photos released by the Harpursville, New York zoo, Animal Adventures Park, there’s growing reason to believe April the giraffe could have her baby within two days. If the baby isn’t born within two days, the birth could most likely be this week. The possibility of an April Fool’s giraffe baby is becoming a reality for those continuing their baby watch. April is a 15-year-old Reticulated giraffe who lives at the park with her five-year-old mate Oliver “Ollie” and approximately 200 0ther animals. The park observed mating behavior in October 2015 and had an estimated birth window for a new giraffe baby to arrive on the scene between January and February 2017. Giraffes are pregnant for approximately 15 months and can conceive every 14-17 days. This high rate of conception makes it very difficult for zookeepers worldwide to accurately predict giraffe due dates.
Anyone following April the giraffe via live cam or regularly visits the Animal Adventure Park Facebook page will know how difficult it has been to predict an accurate due date for the soon-to-arrive giraffe baby. Because of this, zookeepers, including the zoo’s owner Jordan Patch are using physical observations to carefully watch and hopefully predict active labor, delivery, and the birth of the new giraffe baby. New changes revealed in photos show that April may have her baby giraffe within two days as her teats are growing and are becoming filled. The changes have sparked giraffe baby watch and people are buying bottles of champagne to toast the new arrival. Are you holding a giraffe watch baby party?
Giraffe Baby Watch Takes Over Social Media After April’s Live Zoo Cam Goes Viral https://t.co/UwiqfwkYnu— Inquisitr News (@theinquisitr) March 29, 2017
If you haven’t watched the live giraffe cam from the New York zoo, you may see it in the following video player. Included in the playlist are other Animal Adventure Park videos featuring April, zoologists who work with her such as Allysa and Corey, veterinarian Dr. Tim who examines April and her baby at least once per day, and video footage of other animals that live at the park. Those who are currently on active baby watch make sure to watch the giraffe cam at every opportune moment. At this point, there are no more signs or changes to look for. April has met all the milestones expected and active labor truly may begin at any moment. You may watch the live giraffe cam and other important AAP videos in the following playlist.
Now that giraffe baby watch has officially begun and April has made many changes on her journey to active labor, people are excited. Many are sleeping less and excited to witness the miracle of life. At this point, all indications for the start of active labor, delivery, and the birth of a new giraffe baby are being made based upon teat changes and the presence of milk. The Animal Adventure Park announced they will share new photos of April’s teats every day as they document the process. Since the first photos of April’s teats were shared through Facebook, there has been incredible growth and progress made. The Australasian Zookeeping handbook on giraffe reproduction Giraffe Husbandry Manual specifically states on page 48 that a giraffe’s teats will enlarge 19 days before the birth of a giraffe baby and milk is produced two days before the calf is born. With the rapid growth in April’s teats and the presence of liquid and filling up, it is likely that April’s going to give birth within two days, and if not two days, within the week. It is highly unlikely that her teats are filling up yet she is not ready to give birth. However, this is April’s fourth calf and her body knows what it is doing. If there is anything we can count on April for it is following her own time schedule and not those others have set for her.
“The teats start to enlarge about 19 days before parturition and milk production occurs about two days before (Reason 2000).”
Here are the new photos the Animal Adventure Park shared on their Facebook page along with older pictures showing April’s teats. We are expecting newer photos in the March 29 morning update and will add those to the article for comparison once they are publicly released. By the looks of things, those following the live cam are on official giraffe baby watch and many are expecting her calf to be born by this weekend.
Update! The Animal Adventure Park shared teat photos for April for Wednesday, March 29. The change is staggering and there is no question we are going to have a baby calf soon!
Are you one of the countless worldwide currently on giraffe baby watch? Have you followed April’s journey since the onset of the live cam? Are you expecting the giraffe baby to be born within two days, by the weekend or do you think April has fooled us so many times, she might go another month? Please leave your thoughts and opinions in the comments section below.
[Featured Image by Simone Resca/Shutterstock]