What's taking April so long? Phoenix Zoo explains the giraffe birthing process

April the giraffe is due to give birth any day now. Liesl King from the Phoenix Zoo shares some facts about giraffe births.

The great winter storm has come and gone, but still no little giraffe at Animal Adventure Park.

For more than three weeks, millions of people across the world have been glued to their computers and mobile devices watching April, a pregnant 15-year-old giraffe at Animal Adventure Park in Harpursvile, N.Y.

We've watched April eat. We've watched April sleep. We've watched April playfully interact with her calf's father, Oliver. We've watched her stand there. For hours. (Click here to watch the live stream)

Despite signs of hope -- on Monday, a post on Animal Adventure Park's Facebook page teased us by saying "April is looking larger than ever " we're STILL waiting.

But don't worry about April. Liesl King with the Phoenix Zoo said it giraffes tend to have a long pregnancy, about 15 months.

King also said appearances could be deceiving.

"Near the end of the pregnancy, they look really ready. So sometimes you can get a little overexcited and a little anticipating and, you know, 'It's going to be any minute now,' and they really weren't quite ready," she said. 

So it turns out the key to watching April is patience.

"It's not a horrible ordeal for April. She's going through a normal pregnancy. We just want to see it happen," King said. "We want to have it happen now. But, again, they have a very long pregnancy, and she'll be ready when she's ready."

READ | What you should know if you're watching April the giraffe

MORE | All of your 'April the giraffe' questions answered

AND | Man builds 'active labor' notification app for April the giraffe

A winter storm dumped several inches of snow around the park, but don't worry, April and Oliver were nice and cozy.

A Wednesday night post gave us a clue as to what we're watching for:

Vet report today suggests we should begin watching for a shift in calf position/and belly carry from low to back. This would suggest movement into place for birthing.

By Friday afternoon, the following update was posted:

Allysa reports the calf has mastered karate! She has never felt or seen more activity within. April is also eating everything in sight. Likely no St. Patrick's calf; but she is prepping for something!

Someday, and that day may never come, this giraffe will have her baby. And we will be watching the entire time. Hey, we've watched this long. 

In the meantime, here are photos a cute baby giraffe born a couple of weeks ago in Denver:

And some other cute April moments:


© 2017 WXIA-TV


JOIN THE CONVERSATION

To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment