Zookeepers at Chester Zoo have released CCTV footage showing the incredible birth of an endangered Rothschild’s giraffe – as well as his adorable first steps.
Giraffe experts at the zoo monitored the three-and-half-hour labour live on camera as Dagmar dropped her new calf six feet to the floor, landing on a bed of soft straw.
The healthy male youngster, who is yet to be named, was then up on his feet and suckling for the first time just over an hour later. Sarah Roffe, Giraffe Team Manager at the zoo, said: “When a giraffe mum drops her calf to the floor it can look a little dramatic – but it’s not such a long drop when the baby is six foot tall. Nevertheless, to see the birth and the very first steps of an animal as rare of the Rothschild’s giraffe is an incredibly special thing.
“Dagmar is so far being the model mum. She’s staying close to her calf and letting him suckle, which of course is vital in these early few days. The milk is filled with important nutrients like colostrum, which will help the little one to grow and reinforce an inseparable bond between mum and baby.
“This new arrival is a special addition to the international breeding programme forthis endangered species, which is working to boost numbers in zoos and safeguard its future.”