April the Giraffe’s Appetite ‘Remains Strong’ as Calf Calms Down, Zoo Says – NBC New York

April the giraffe’s appetite “remains strong”, but her hungry calf has calmed down, her keepers at an upstate New York zoo say.

The mom-to-be is now carrying everything closer to her rear, which keepers say is exactly what they want. April’s calf has calmed down, a stark change from the active kicking and moving keepers have observed over the past couple of days.

“Keepers have noted a calming down of the calf and April carrying everything a bit towards the rear. This is exactly what we want!” the zoo said in a Sunday morning Facebook post. “Appetite remains strong.”

The zoo shared an adorable photo captured last summer of the lovers extending their slick black tongues as they fight over a guest’s carrot offering.

April’s wax caps are still in place. As for when she’ll deliver, only time will tell, Animal Adventure Park says. 

Some viewers got excited Saturday when both a veterinarian and the park owner visited April, but the zoo said it was just a checkup. 

Several signs point in the right direction: April’s growing belly was “very low” and seemed to be shaped like an egg Saturday morning, but by nightfall it was “high and tight,” the zoo said Saturday evening. Her backside swelled to nearly twice its size days prior. 

Watch the live stream below (NOTE: weather conditions may cause intermittent disruptions).

Nearly 90,000 people were watching April as the sun beamed Sunday morning.

The long-necked beauty peered over Oliver’s pen and gazed longingly at him as she chewed the last of her breakfast. She then began to nibble at and lick the wood divider for a few moments before taking a drink of water.

Intrigued, Oliver poked his head above his pen to watch her snack on a clump of hay. The two were seen interacting and swinging their tails for a moment before moving to the opposite ends of their respective pens.

Behind the Scenes With April the Giraffe as Birth LoomsBehind the Scenes With April the Giraffe as Birth Looms

April has had periods of edginess in recent weeks brought on by stretches of cold weather and her active calf. Neither she nor Oliver have been able to roam freely outdoors because of the bitter cold and heaps of snow covering the tri-state.

Nevertheless, April is in “great physical and mental condition,” and the vets who have been monitoring her say they’re pleased with her progress.

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April’s pregnancy was catapulted into global headlines late last month after YouTube briefly yanked the zoo’s stream following complaints by animal activists that it violated the site’s policies concerning “nudity and sexual content.” Thousands upon thousands of commenters voiced their frustration on Facebook and YouTube, and the stream was restored within an hour or so.

Jordan Patch, owner of the Animal Adventure Park, says the natural curiosity surrounding giraffes and their birthing process has been a huge factor in drawing crowds.

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Everyone is waiting for April the giraffe to give birth.  While you wait, take a look at some of the other recently born zoo animals from around the world.

(Published Friday, March 3, 2017)

“I think the fact that she’s a giraffe and she’s a neat species that people are interested in, that’s fostered a lot of the attention,” he said. “The fact that you’re gonna get to witness the miracle of birth from an animal that you really don’t get to see give birth — that’s neat.”

He added that April’s pregnancy is not just live entertainment, but a teachable moment and source for education.

NJ Sees 3 Baby Giraffes Born as April's Pregnancy ContinuesNJ Sees 3 Baby Giraffes Born as April’s Pregnancy Continues

Giraffe pregnancies last up to 15 months. Labor lasts anywhere from a few hours to a few days. The calf, which will be the first born at Animal Adventure Park, will be about 150 pounds and 6 feet tall at birth and up and walking in about an hour.

The zoo said it will hold an online competition to name the baby giraffe once it’s born.

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April the Giraffe’s Appetite ‘Remains Strong’ as Calf Calms Down, Zoo Says – NBC New York

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