A spot of good news

Jerusalem Biblical Zoo welcomes new baby giraffe

Zoo says newborn and its 26-year-old mother are doing well, staff look forward to end of lockdown so visitors can see her

Akia, a 26-year-old giraffe, and her newborn are seen at the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo. (Jerusalem Biblical Zoo)
Akia, a 26-year-old giraffe, and her newborn are seen at the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo. (Jerusalem Biblical Zoo)

A baby giraffe has been born at the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo, the zoo announced Friday.

The baby weighed in at 65 kilograms (143 pounds) with a height of 180 centimeters (5’8 feet). The zoo did not specify if she has been named.

Her mother, Akia, is 26 years old and has been at the zoo since 1996.

“At her age, pregnancy is considered a risk. Happily, the mother and her cub are doing well,” the zoo wrote on its Facebook page.

Giraffes usually live up to 26 years in the wild and can live a few years longer in captivity.

Referring to the ongoing lockdown, the zoo said it hoped to soon reopen and that when it does, visitors will be able to see the baby giraffe, the second born at the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo since June.

"אקיאה" הג'ירפה ???? המבוגרת בגן החיות (בת 26) הביאה לעולם גורה קטנה במשקל 65 ק"ג וגובה 180 ס"מ. בגילה היריון נחשב להריון…

Posted by ‎גן החיות התנ"כי בירושלים – The Jerusalem Biblical Zoo‎ on Friday, October 9, 2020

Aside from adding to the zoo’s herd of giraffes, the birth is also an important contribution for the particular species, the South African giraffe, which is considered vulnerable due to hunting that has reduced its numbers in the wild.

There are currently only about 100,000 giraffes of all kinds living in the wild, a third less than there were in the 1980s, according to the Giraffe Conservation Foundation, an international science-based organization.

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