The newest member of the Kilimanjaro Safaris is a Masai giraffe named Aella. The adorable calf is only two months old, and today she made her debut on the Savanna.
- On June 29th an adorable female Masai giraffe calf was born at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Today, Aella (eye-la) made her “on-stage” debut on the Kilimanjaro Safaris Savanna.
- Guests visiting the park can look for her when they visit the attraction. She should be easy to spot as she’s the youngest and smallest in the herd.
- Aella was named after an Amazon warrior as has shown herself to be a brave and bold young giraffe with a curious and independent spirit. She’s adventurous enough to explore on her own, sometimes leaving mom a few paces behind.
- Aella will nurse for about a year, and then she will move to the lush vegetation available throughout the savanna. By the time she’s full grown, her tongue will be 18-inches long and she’ll use it to strip leaves off thorny branches. Full grown Masai giraffes consume up to 75 pounds of food a day!
What they’re saying:
- Disney Parks Blog: “Aella’s birth marks a first for her parents – mom Lily and dad George. The pair was chosen to breed through the Species Survival Plan (SSP), which is overseen by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and ensures responsible breeding of threatened and endangered species. Breeding this pair is important to the long-term survival of the species because it adds more genetic diversity to the giraffe population, which helps ensure future generations.”
More about Masais:
- A vulnerable species found primarily in Kenya and Tanzania, there are believed to be roughly 32,000 Masai giraffes left in the wild. Sadly, their population continues to decline because of poaching and habitat loss.
Disney Conservation Fund:
- The Disney Conservation Fund supports conservation efforts in Africa to protect wildlife habitats, including those of giraffes.
- Earlier this year, several Disney animal care experts went to Uganda to help relocate a herd of giraffes across the Nile River to establish a newer, safer habitat away from oil-drilling fields. Another team went to Kenya to support a giraffe and zebra population census.
- To learn more about giraffes and the threats they face in the wild, visit DisneyAnimals.com.