[UPDATE, 9/27/22, 8:40 a.m.]

The new young giraffe calf recently born at Blank Park Zoo now has a name, and it couldn't be more fitting. According to the Des Moines Register, more than 3,000 voters chose between the names listed below and the little guy is officially known as...BAKARI. The name means "hopeful and promising"

Officials at Blank Park Zoo said:

we hope that Bakari will inspire action to save giraffes from the ‘silent extinction’ they are currently experiencing

Visitors can start meeting him on October 4, weather and training permitting. The zoo is typically open daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. with tickets for adults priced at $16 for adults and $10 for children.

[UPDATE, 9/15/22, 4:25 p.m.]

The male giraffe seen above was born on September 7 at Blank Park Zoo in Des Moines. All signs indicate he is doing well, so according to KCCI, it's time to name him. The choice will be revealed on September 26 and they are as follows:

  • Mosi - meaning 'first born'
  • Bakari – meaning ‘hopeful, promising’
  • Ikemba (Kemba) - meaning 'strength of a nation,' 'power of the people,' 'full of faith'
  • Tajiri – meaning ‘hope, confidence, wealthy’

Voting will end on Friday, September 23 at noon and the final name will be picked on September 26. Voting is free, but the zoo is encouraging a free-will donation for the newborn's care.

Vote here.


If you're like me, you needed to end this longest short week ever on a high note. So let's do just that by welcoming one of the newest little arrivals at Blank Park Zoo in Des Moines. According to the Des Moines Register

A male giraffe calf was born at 4:29 a.m. Tuesday to zoo giraffe parents Zola, 6, and Jakobi, 17, according to a release from Blank Park Zoo. Just 30 hours after birth, zoo keepers and veterinary staff measured him at 5 feet, 5 inches tall and 107 pounds.

This little guy is yet unnamed, and according to the Register, that's where you (we) come in. Starting next week, you can vote on a name using the Blank Park Zoo website. On September 14, officials at the zoo will release a list of potential names for us to choose from. Voting will be free, but a donation will be encouraged to help care for the male calf. Bookmark their website here to stay tuned for details on the voting process.

Blankl Park Giraffe
Blank Park Zoo

The baby giraffe's parents are Jacobi, 17, and first-time mom Zola, 6. Just 30 hours after birth, zoo keepers and veterinary staff measured him at 5 feet, 5 inches tall, and 107 pounds. Officials say the newborn giraffe passed all the major milestones, including learning to stand. Based on that, they are cautiously optimistic about his health, noting that the mortality rate is generally a bit higher for firstborns.

Blank Park Zoo
Blank Park Zoo

Even more exciting is that you can click here to be one of the first to "meet" the new arrival in person before the rest of the public gets their chance this fall.

Blank Park Zoo
Blank Park Zoo

Welcome to the world, little guy.

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