April the Giraffe is close to giving birth! Watch live from the Animal Adventure Park in New York!
Here's an update from the zoo:
April Update - April has zero interest in food. Behavior is extremely off. Signs of contractions continue.
Vet report -
Here are the signs that I'm happy to be seeing: significant changes to her "back end" including vulvar swelling, laxity and a thick, gooey discharge. Mammary development including milk let-down and some occasional dripping. Her behavior has changed drastically from yesterday to today. She is less engaging, hesitant to eat her feed (and treats) and unresponsive to a lot of various stimuli. You will also see her do a few things including standing and staring off into space as well as stretching her neck and back legs. If you watch carefully you will see her abdominal wall tense up during those episodes. You'll also see a lot more squinting and just odd behavior.
Also important to note is the amount and size of her fecal output. Everything she is doing is surely pointing to her going into labor soon. - Not much has changed from the morning but I suspect she will go quickly.
Background from AP:
A pregnant giraffe has its own website, a GoFundMe page, an apparel line and millions of people worldwide watching live-streaming video waiting for it to give birth.
The 15-year-old long-legged YouTube star, named April, is expected to give birth any time now in her enclosed pen at the Animal Adventure Park in Harpursville, rural upstate village 130 miles northwest of New York City.
Since the privately owned zoo's giraffe cam began live-streaming video from April's enclosure last month, the feed has totaled more than 15 million views on YouTube as people around the world check on the status of
April's 15-month pregnancy. The birth of April's fourth calf was still pending as of Thursday, when the live video had about 115,000 people looking in.
"Instead of local or regional we're global," said Cortney Whalen, a spokeswoman for zoo owner Jordan Patch. "It has definitely broadened the general awareness of the park."
In videos posted on the park's Facebook page this week, Patch has said that he's been busy tending to his 200-plus other animals and that the flood of emails has become "so overbearing" that he's asking people to stop sending them.
A GoFundMe page set up for April, giraffe father Oliver and their calf has raised more than $23,000 out of a goal of $50,000. Whalen said the park also has received separate donations, but she said she didn't know how much. All the money will be used to feed, house and care for the giraffes.
April's website, aprilthegiraffe.com, includes a link for buying apparel from baby clothing to adult-sized hoodies imprinted with a giraffe's head and "#Aprils View Crew" along with the park's name and location.
The park's live stream was interrupted briefly last week when YouTube pulled the feed after someone reported the images contained explicit material and nudity. Patch blamed "a handful of extremists and animal rights activists" for the interruption.
Giraffes can be in labor anywhere from hours to a full day. April was elsewhere when she gave birth to her first three calves, and this one will be the Harpursville zoo's first giraffe calf. Patch plans to hold an online naming competition for the baby after it's born.
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