Baby Giraffe Born at Zoo


January 31, 2012

Contact: Nicky Mora, Senior Manager, Marketing/PR

(510) 632-9525 ext. 130

Baby Giraffe Born at Oakland Zoo

A baby reticulated giraffe was born January 12, 2012 at approximately 6:30am behind-the-scenes at the Oakland Zoo. Weighing in at eighty pounds and seventy-two inches, the healthy baby girl named "Maggie" was born to Twiga (Mom) and Mabusu (Dad). This is the first female giraffe born at the Zoo in nearly a decade. On Thursday, February 2, Maggie will make her grand debut to the public.

Oakland Zoo is extremely proud to be hosting giraffe experts from all over the world February 6th through the 9th when they host the conference for the International Association of Giraffe Care Professionals. The conference will welcome zookeepers, veterinarians, researchers, field biologists and conservationists, all coming to work together to improve the lives and welfare of both captive and wild giraffe around the globe!

More Information About Giraffe
The population of wild Reticulated giraffes has decreased by over 80% in the past ten years. A decade ago there were 30,000 Reticulated giraffe and today the number stands at less than 5,000 animals.

Giraffe give birth standing up because the calf needs to drop four to five feet to start breathing. Babies can stand and walk within the first hour after birth. At birth, the ossicone horns are scrunched down so they look like a little tuft of hair. Gestation in giraffe takes fourteen to fifteen months. When born, most babies measure in around six feet in height. In the wild, giraffe can live twenty to thirty years. Giraffe can go up to two weeks without water. The long-necked animals have seven vertebrae in their necks, the same as humans and most other mammals. Giraffe lay down to sleep and sleep only one to twenty minutes at a time.


The Bay Area's award-winning Oakland Zoo is home to more than 660 native and exotic animals. The Zoo offers many educational programs and kid’s activities perfect for science field trips, family day trips and exciting birthday parties. Nestled in the Oakland Hills, in 500-acre Knowland Park, the Zoo is located at 9777 Golf Links Road, off Highway 580. The East Bay Zoological Society (Oakland Zoo) is a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization supported in part by members, contributions, the City of Oakland and the East Bay Regional Parks. For more information please visit our website at

The East Bay Zoological Society has managed and operated both the Zoo and surrounding Knowland Park for the City of Oakland since 1982. Under its management, the Oakland Zoo presents an award-winning experience for visitors, fosters knowledge and understanding of animals and the environment through educational programs, and has earned national awards and international acclaim for its animal management and endangered species programs. Over the years, exhibit by exhibit, the Oakland Zoo has been reinvigorated and revitalized, making it a place where animals thrive and visitors enjoy. For more information, please visit our website at