Amid challenging times in the US and around the world, the Audubon Nature Institute in New Orleans welcomed a new resident, a baby giraffe named Hope.
Sue Ellen, a middle-aged giraffe at the Freeport-McMoRan Audubon Species Survival Centre, gave birth Monday, to the adorable young giraffe.
Audubon Nature Institute President and CEO Ron Forman said Hope was the perfect name for the calf, especially as New Orleans has been hit hard during the coronavirus pandemic.
“What name could be more fitting than ‘Hope’ in these challenging times?” Mr Forman said.
“Hope is what has sustained our community through seemingly insurmountable crises in the past and what we must hold onto as we continue on in the coming days and weeks. May we all take comfort in the reminder that, even in the darkest of days, life continues, undaunted.”
Species Survival Centre curator Michelle Hatwood said the staff had known the calf was on the way for 15 months but said it can be tough to pinpoint a likely delivery date for giraffes.
The calf was born 1.8m tall, weighing in at 86 kilograms.
Located on 1200 acres of land west of downtown New Orleans, the centre is now home to 13 giraffes, the release said. The new calf was the eighth giraffe born at the centre as part of the Alliance for Sustainable Wildlife conservation breeding partnership with San Diego Zoo Global.
The giraffes reside in a 18-hectare forested area and spend most of their day foraging and looking for their favourite leaves to eat.
Since the coronavirus pandemic began in Louisiana, the Audubon Nature Institute has been forced to close its facilities to the public.
It’s asking federal officials for assistance in providing funds to larger non-profits like zoos and aquariums.
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