Baby Giraffe Born At Memphis Zoo - | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Baby Giraffe Born At Memphis Zoo

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) -- The Memphis Zoo says a 5 1/2-foot-tall reticulated giraffe has been born there.

The zoo said in a statement Friday that the 115-pound baby girl named Maliki was born Jan. 16. It is the zoo's sixth baby giraffe in seven years, and it increases the giraffe herd total to nine.

The proud parents are 19-year-old mother Marilyn and 15-year-old father Kenya. The baby's body has light brown and white coloring that gets darker around her face.

"Marilyn is a great, experienced mother," says Matt Thompson, Director of Animal Programs. "We're always excited about the birth of a healthy baby, but I'm especially pleased because Maliki inherited her mother's beautiful coloring. She has her mother's dark face, which is something the other calves haven't had."

Native to Africa, reticulated giraffes give birth standing and are born with horns on their heads to protect them from a 6-foot fall to the ground at birth. They can grow up to be 15 to 17 feet tall.

The zoo says it has kept reticulated giraffes since 1957.

(Copyright 2013 By The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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