Como Zoo’s baby giraffe now has a name: Ivy. Over the past weekend, guests to the zoo, as well as followers of Como’s social media, voted for their favorite of three names chosen by the giraffe’s Zookeepers: Dahlia, Aster, and Ivy. With over 17,000 ballots cast, Ivy was the winner with 45% of the vote, followed by Dahlia with 40% and Aster with 15% of the votes.
The 6-ft, 132-pounds beautiful baby calf was born on Monday, November 6 at 8:09pm and was up-and-standing close to mom, Zinnia, by 8:50pm. Ivy is the 3rd calf born to 7-year-old Zinnia. Como’s current herd currently consists of Zinnia, Clover, Skeeter, and baby Ivy.
The birth is the result of a recommendation from the Species Survival Plan (SSP), coordinated by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). SSPs provide breeding recommendations to maximize genetic diversity, with the goal of ensuring the long-term survival of the AZA population and the health of individual animals. Como Zoo is an accredited institution of the AZA.
The giraffe is the tallest of all land-living animal species. They can be as tall as 18 feet tall and have a prehensile (used for grasping) tongue as long as 18 inches. During the first two years of a giraffe’s life, it doubles in height, often standing over 12-feet tall. Giraffe gestation lasts between 14 and 15 months, after which a single calf is born. Like human fingerprints, the markings or spots of a giraffe’s coat are unique to each individual. Reticulated giraffes are native to the dry savannahs and open woodlands of sub-Saharan Africa.