Giraffe born at Blank Park Zoo, name search begins soon

Des Moines Blank Park Zoo has welcomed a new baby giraffe.
Published: Sep. 9, 2022 at 11:05 AM CDT
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DES MOINES, Iowa (KCRG) - Des Moines Blank Park Zoo has welcomed a new baby giraffe.

The zoo says the male giraffe was born Tuesday and was 5′5″ at birth, weighing 107 pounds. The calf’s mother, Zola, is six years old and has lived at Blank Park Zoo since 2017. Jakobi, the father, is 17 years old and has previously sired several calves.

“We are cautiously optimistic the calf is healthy because he passed all the major milestones for a newborn which include quickly learning to stand, walk and nurse from mom regularly. However, this is Zola’s first calf and mortality for calves is higher for a first born,” said Jay Tetzloff, chief animal officer.

Currently, the calf is bonding with Zola away from public view and Zoo officials hope visitors will be able to meet him later this fall.

The zoo will start a public vote on the Blank Park website for a name for the baby giraffe starting on September 14th. You can also bid in an auction to see the giraffe in a behind-the-scenes tour before the baby giraffe goes on view to the public.