Rare Giraffe Born: Endangered Rothschild Giraffe Gives Birth; Watch Calf Stand For First Time [VIDEO]

By Jason Van Hoven on March 25, 2013 9:38 AM EDT

Rothschild giraffe
Rothschild giraffes are listed as an endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of Threatened Species. (Photo: Creative Commons)

A rare giraffe was born in a Greenwich, Conn., conservation center on Friday, according to reports.

The Greenwich Time reported that Petal, a 6-year-old Rothschild giraffe, an endangered species, gave birth to a female calf as a group of other giraffes and staff at the LEO Zoological Conservation Center watched. The rare giraffe that was born was nearly 6-foot-tall and has the potential to reach 18 feet in height.

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The rare giraffe that was born was the first born at the off-exhibit conservation center.

Marcella Leone, founder and director of the center, said that the rare giraffe that was born was "curious, approaching humans early on in its first days of life."

Petal, now a second-time mother, has already bonded with her newborn rare giraffe, which looks like her, with a mix of dark patches broken up by bright cream channels.

Petal was able to clean her calf with her 18-inch tongue, and within 30 minutes of the rare giraffe being born, it was standing and nursing, Leone said.

A contest to name the rare giraffe that was born has been up on the center's website. The person who can guess the closest to the actual day and time of birth will be invited to visit the newborn with their immediate family.

Rothschild giraffes -- named and described by Lord Walter Rothschild, a British zoologist, after an expedition to East Africa in the early 1900s -- are classified as endangered as there are fewer than 670 left in the wild in their indigenous Kenya and Uganda.

Watch a video of the rare giraffe born standing for the first time below:

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