The question on everyone's mind is: who will give birth first—the Duchess of Cambridge or the Duchess of Phinney Ridge?
|Photo by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo.|
The zoo's own duchess, 6-year-old Rothschild’s giraffe Olivia, is expected to give birth any day now. With a gestation period of 14 to 15 months, Olivia’s window to give birth is pretty wide—it began June 24 and closes August 12, explained Martin Ramirez, a curator at the zoo. Olivia’s belly is pretty big and she’s carrying low so we expect a calf any day.
Zookeepers are keeping a close watch for signs of labor which may include restlessness, loss of appetite, or biting or licking her flanks. We will bring Olivia into the barn and mobilize a 24-hour birth watch at the first sign of labor, and we also have a den cam installed in the barn to monitor the new family.
The last viable birth of a giraffe at the zoo was in 1997. There’s a lot of excitement at the zoo for this baby. It’s been a long time since we've had a baby giraffe running on our savanna so we can’t wait!
We'll be sure to share any news here. Stay tuned!