News & Events
October 7, 2010 It’s been an exciting week for staff and visitors alike at Global Wildlife Center. Saturday, October 2, Kameel, the first giraffe born at Global Wildlife Center, gave birth to a healthy female calf, “Maci.” Just 4 days later, Zira, also one of Kameel’s offspring, gave birth to another female calf, making “Maggie” a third generation giraffe born at the Center.
Staff members have been anxiously awaiting the baby giraffes for months. The birth of a female gives extra cause for celebration, because female giraffes can live their entire lives at Global Wildlife Center. Male calves must be moved to another facility before breeding age.
These calves are the first offspring from John, a male giraffe that replaced the patriarch of the reticulated giraffe family, Slim, upon his death in 2009. There was some question in the beginning as to whether the babies were fathered by Slim or John. Now, staffers are sure John is the father, and according to Wes Thompson, Operations Manager, “John must have some great genes!”
Both Maci and Maggie were standing within 30 minutes, less than half the time it has taken previous baby giraffes at the Center to find their feet. They are extremely active and curious for their young age. Normally baby giraffes go through a “lying out” period, during which they spend the first two weeks of their life resting, so that all of their energy is channeled toward growth.
Both baby giraffes have been spending an unusual amount of time up and walking about, exploring their new surroundings at Global Wildlife Center. Both babies’ first days were action packed - Maci had a great time chasing an eland around a tree, and Maggie ran right up to several tours. The babies have met once, and stayed together about an hour, smelling and licking each other. Afterward, they moved back toward their mothers and their respective resting places.
Many visitors to Global Wildlife Center this past week have been lucky enough to see the babies, who are both free-roaming the wildlife preserve with their reticulated giraffe family. Staff members expect the two babies to become fast friends as they get older. In the wild, baby giraffes will stay close to their mothers for the first few weeks, then join a crèche, or a group of young giraffes.
Baby giraffes are born after a 15 month gestation period, and are around six feet tall and 150 lbs. at birth. The mother giraffe gives birth standing up, and the baby falls approximately six feet to the ground when it’s born.
Visitors to Global Wildlife Center have been telling us for years that we should be on animal planet, and now that dream is a reality! Check out Wendee Holtcamp's Animal Planet blog: http://blogs.discovery.com/animal_news/2009/12/tiny-kangaroo-joey-adopted-by-human-mom.html
Skippy the red kangaroo has captured our hearts and we've compiled a slideshow of memorable moments of his growth and fun kangaroo facts. His growth so far has been full of lots of trials and tribulations but also lots of triumph! Keep Skippy in your thoughts and prayers and come out to see him today!
Click here for the slideshow!
Special photo credits for the slideshow include #1. Cindy Bonish Everymilesamemory.com; #6,#7,#8,#21 Maci Matherne; #18,#24,#25,#27 Cheryl Schneider. Thanks for snapping such great shots of our little man!
A wonderful time was had by all at our Members Only Back to School Beach Party! Did you and your family get snapped by our Staff Photographer Maci Matherne? Click here to view photos of the event on our Flickr account. Over 900 members and their guests attended the 2009 Beach Party. A wonderful time was had by all! Join as a Global Wildlife Member and receive FREE unlimited safari tours for an entire year, a discount on items in the Safari Gift shop, and invitations to our two Members Only Parties, where you can enjoy free food, drink, and entertainment. Click here for more information on joining the Global Wildlife family today!
Skippy's story broke on July 7, 2009 when Sylvia Schon wrote an article about his amazing journey for the Hammond Daily Star. Then Allen Tumey from WAFB in Baton Rouge called to say he wanted to meet Skippy too. Janet McConnaughey from the Associated Press wanted to know the skinny on Skippy. Thanks to her wonderful AP release, Skippy went national!!! WWL TV featured Skippy, too, on the front page of their news website! NOLA.COM featured it as well! The CBS Early Show invited Skippy and Christina Cooper, his surrogate mom, to New York! See Skippy backstage at the Early Show in his own green room! It has been a whirlwind. Skippy's AP release led to his story being told in news outlets around the world - even Italy. WWLTV's morning show anchor Eric Paulsen met Skippy on the morning news. Chris Buckley from WGNO did a story on Skippy, too! MSNBC.com also featured Skippy. Thank you so much to all of you who have helped us spread the good news about Skippy's incredible story of survival at Global Wildlife Center.
Global Wildlife was featured in Louisiana Life article.