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Lifestyle & Leisure

It's a big boy!

Wednesday, 23rd October, 2019 4:15pm

By Aislinn O Connor

The world just got a little bit heavier! Fota Wildlife Park have recently announced the birth of a male giraffe calf born on the 14 September. Fota now need your help with naming the new little calf.

Lead Ranger Aidan Rafferty said that the new calf has settled in well to his new home and is already chasing his sisters Noínín and Siofra around the paddock.

“We are delighted to welcome this new calf to the herd at Fota. We are also delighted to say that efforts to conserve this once endangered subspecies of giraffe are succeeding with the populations in the wild slowly increasing. Dedicated programmes from the European Endangered Species Programme (EEP) and the cooperative work that zoos and wildlife parks do are helping to raise awareness for the need for conservation of this subspecies.”

The calf was born to mother Sapphire, who came to Fota all the way from Edinburugh in 2004 and first time father Ferdie, who hails from Burges Zoo in Belgium. Both animals were transferred as part of the European Endangered Species Programme (EEP) which is a population management programme run by the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria to manage captive species populations that may be at risk of going extinct in the wild.

All the giraffes born at Fota have been named as Gaeilge. Fota asks the public to remember that the calf is male and that only the entries through the form on the blog will be considered as a name. The blog can be found at

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