COLORADO SPRINGS — Cheyenne Mountain Zoo welcomed a new member to their giraffe herd.
On Wednesday, visitors saw Bailey’s water break in the giraffe’s yard.
Inside the giraffe barn at Cheyenne Mountain Zoo you can see Bailey and her one-day-old calf. The giraffe barn will be a designated quiet zone for guests and staff so that mother and baby can bond.
“It came pretty quickly for her,” said Jason Bredahl, Animal Care Manager at Cheyenne Mountain Zoo. “We thought it might take a couple of hours after she started going into labor out in the main habitat, but we brought her inside, and then really pretty fast after that, she had her baby.”
The calf struggled to get her footing but zoo keepers were able to help her up.
“You can imagine those long giraffe legs being tucked up inside for so long, they don’t work great right at first,” said Bredahl. “So we just give her a little bit of boost that first time, and then after that, she’s been moving around on her own, resting really nicely.”
Zookeepers are monitoring the calf and her mother to make sure they are doing well.
“We want to see them take good breaks because they do get tired as youngsters and then, of course, nursing and getting that colostrum and milk,” said Bredahl.
Other members of the giraffe herd will be introduced in the upcoming days to Bailey and her calf.
“It’ll be some of our older females who do really well with the youngster’s calves,” said Bredahl.
Khalid, the father of the calf, will also be introduced soon to her as well.
“Dad actually was next to them last night and he was paying close attention to them,” said Bredahl. “He wasn’t in the same space with them, but he was definitely interested in seeing our mom and the baby. It’ll be a little bit longer before we start introducing them to some other herd members in the next few days.”
Cheyenne Mountain Zoo offers an interactive giraffe feeding experience where visitors can buy lettuce to feed the giraffes. Visitors will now be able to view the newborn calf.
“It’s really great because obviously, people come here to be able to feed our outstanding world famous giraffe heard but then when we can welcome a youngster like this, it’s really a fantastic, and amazing time for everybody to see how they started off as such a small animal,” said Bredhal.
Following Cheyenne Mountain Zoo guidelines, the baby girl will not be named until she is 30 days old.