Como Zoo’s baby giraffe now has a name: Sota. Over the MEA weekend guests visiting from International Falls to Magnolia, Minnesota had the opportunity to stop at ballot boxes placed around the zoo to cast their vote for one of three names: Elliott, Fonzie, and Sota. With over 2,300 ballots cast, Sota was the winner with 43% of the vote, followed by Elliott with 37% and Fonzie with 20% of the votes.
Sota is a nod to the great state of Minnesota, and that the baby giraffe is likely the only 6’ 4”, 160lbs baby ever to be born in Minnesota.
The new baby male, born Tuesday, September 10th, is the 8th calf born to Clover and the 23rd giraffe birth at Como Zoo in the last 25 years. Sota weighed 160 pounds at birth (Clover’s largest to date) and stands 6’ 4” tall. Como’s current herd currently consists of Clover, Daisy, Skeeter (father), Penelope, and Sota. This is Skeeter’s 7th offspring, 5 of which have been female.
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.
Como Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). AZA is America’s leading accrediting organization for zoos and aquariums, and accredits only those institutions that have achieved rigorous, professional standards for animal welfare and management, veterinary care, wildlife conservation and research, education, safety, staffing and more. With only 200 accredited members, AZA is building North America’s largest wildlife conservation movement and is your link to helping animals in their native habitats.
The giraffe is available for sponsorship. Sponsoring an animal is a unique way to help Como Zoo with its wildlife conservation efforts. Donations support enhanced habitats and efforts to maintain the best care possible for the animals at Como Zoo. For more information visit: https://comofriends.org/give/sponsor-an-animal/