Who’s ready for Round 5? After over a million antsy fans witnessed the birth of Tajiri months ago, April the giraffe may be pregnant again in 2017. The Giraffe Cam and gestation journey may be set to begin, based on a new report.
The day was April 15, nearly seven months ago, that the most famous giraffe in the world gave birth to a sprightly baby at Adventure Park in Harpursville, New York. If you’re an animal enthusiast, you were among scores of others who took the journey of a lifetime to watch April birth her offspring. Today, her pride and joy — one of four — stands 10-feet-tall.
The giraffe sanctuary’s owner, Jordan Patch, participated in a round of interviews on Friday. He appeared on the set of Good Morning America and offered an update on April, her mate Oliver, and her youngest calf.
Rumors have floated about recently that April could be pregnant again, less than a year after a live stream phenomenon took on a life of its own. With a brief response to a question from a GMA host, Patch had many waiting with bated breath about the 15-year-old reticulated giraffe, according to an Express report.
“I cannot confirm nor deny the possibility of another pregnancy,” the park’s owner cryptically replied. However, it was enough to create a viral belief that April the giraffe is pregnant yet again. He then asked if everyone was “ready for another giraffe cam.”
Two weeks earlier, Express updated readers about April’s fitness to have another baby. The news was positive: Oliver’s mate was healthy enough to conceive again should the moment present itself.
April has successfully bred four other calves and keepers see no reason why she can’t get pregnant again soon, according to a message posted on the park’s Facebook page.
“As you can see, the lovebirds are back at it again! April…has our blessing to allow nature to take its course. The cam was once shut down for nudity; perhaps it’s good we are offline during this ‘time.'”
Giraffe gestation periods are among the longest in the animal kingdom (twice as long as humans), according to MNN. Pregnancies last as long as 15 months (464 days). While twins are possible, giraffes usually give birth to one calf at a time, and won’t deliver another for some 16 months on average.
April’s 16-month pregnancy with her last calf was celebrated the world over. Those who tuned in live via the Giraffe Cam expressed frustration when a “very pregnant” April’s gestation period went beyond her expected due date.
Some even thought the park had pulled a fake news stunt. Finally, April’s spindly legged baby was born after 65 nail-biting days of anticipation, according to People.
From the start, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals denounced updates from the park of April’s pregnancy, declaring that “fragile, sensitive giraffes” should be allowed to roam in their natural habitats and not confined to zoos. The animal rights group chided park officials for taking part in “shameful” breeding of giraffes in captivity.
Patch shot back emphatically and addressed the group’s characterization of his operation. April’s caretaker denied breeding as a form of profit and sport. Instead, he said his mission is one of “conservation” to mitigate the potential destruction and “silent extinction” of giraffe populations.
“While PETA fights the small battles, attacking efforts like ours; we are instead taking on the war that is giraffe conservation.”
While it’s unclear if April the giraffe is pregnant again, viewers are visiting the zoo’s live stream via YouTube to witness nature — possibly — at work again.
If you’re new to the giraffe craze that captivated the hearts of millions, you could be in for another long gestation period. Until then, Tajiri will likely entertain you with his juvenile antics.
[Featured Image by AP Photo/Kai-Uwe Knoth]