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File photo. (iStock/Thinkstock)(HARPURSVILLE, N.Y.) — The calf whose birth captured the internet’s attention has been given a name: Tajiri.
The name of April the giraffe’s calf was announced Monday on Good Morning America by Jordan Patch, the owner of Animal Adventure Park in Harpursville, New York.
“Tajiri is a word in Swahili that means hope,” Patch said. “The name also stands for confidence, which our calf is — very, very confident.”
JUST IN: Tajiri! @AprilTheGiraffe‘s baby boy gets a name!
Tajiri means ‘hope’ in Swahili ❤️ pic.twitter.com/QbMvJ3d1Mh
— Good Morning America (@GMA) May 1, 2017
The zoo held a contest to name the calf, requesting a monetary donation per vote. The winner was “Allysa’s choice,” referring to Allysa Swilley, the giraffe keeper at Animal Adventure Park.
Swilley, who led the care for April over the 16 months of her pregnancy, chose the name Tajiri for the newborn calf with the help of other park officials.
“They picked that name because they hope that we can continue forward this message of conservation for sustainability and preservation of giraffes in the wild and also our efforts in captivity,” Patch said, adding that the calf will be nicknamed “Taj.”
Proceeds from the naming contest will be split among giraffe conservation efforts and giraffe care at the adventure park, according to Patch.
The Animal Adventure Park began live-streaming April’s pregnancy on YouTube in late February, and millions of viewers tuned in.
This is April’s fourth calf. The 15-year-old giraffe has never lost a baby nor had a stillborn, according to the zoo.
Taj, April’s newest calf, is “doing great,” according to Patch.
“He’s certainly not little anymore,” he said, adding that Taj has grown a few inches and is now already above 6 feet in height.
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