December brings joy to the Seneca Park Zoo as another Masai giraffe calf is born. Iggy, a female giraffe from the Animals of the Savanna exhibit, gave birth to a calf on Wednesday night. This comes just a week after another giraffe calf was born to Kipenzi, also a Masai giraffe.
The zoo officials have revealed that the week-old calf from Kipenzi is male and will be named Parker Junior in memory of its late father. The community sees this new addition as a holiday gift and is excited for both calves to be introduced.
Dr. Chris McKinney, the zoo veterinarian, reports that the newest calf is active and nursing well. The calf will be examined by the veterinary staff on Friday, but it appears to be healthy and already playing with Parker Junior.
In order to allow Iggy, Kipenzi, and their calves to continue bonding, the Animals of the Savanna building will be closed for a few days. Iggy and Kipenzi are both 6 years old.
The youngest calf is the fourth Masai giraffe to be born at the Seneca Park Zoo. All four calves were fathered by Parker, who sadly passed away earlier this year after getting his neck caught in a support structure of a giraffe enclosure gate.
Iggy, the mother of the youngest calf, gave birth to her first calf, Olmstead, in April 2022. Olmstead will remain at the zoo, and another young giraffe named JD joined the group in October.
Kipenzi's second pregnancy resulted in the birth of Parker Junior. Unfortunately, her first calf had to be euthanized at three weeks old due to a congenital abnormality in his left front fetlock joint.
The Director of the Seneca Park Zoo, Steve Lacy, expresses his excitement for the new additions and praises the care provided by the staff. He looks forward to the opening of the giraffe barn so that visitors can witness the amazing calves themselves.
Despite having a squamous cell carcinoma growth on her jaw, Kipenzi continues to eat well and behave normally. The zoo's Animal Care teams are treating the cancerous area and monitoring her closely.