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Giraffe Born at Nashville Zoo

Update - Meet Enzi!

Thanks to your overwhelming response to our giraffe naming contest, we are sending over 700 pairs of used jeans to the Jeans for Giraffes conservation program. The winning name, Enzi, was the far and away winner with 407 Pairs (Mahali placed second with 188 pairs and Mkali came in last with 131).

In other giraffe news, our reticulated giraffe Layla is leaving this month for her new home, and we are expecting the arrival of an adult female Masai giraffe around the same time. Make sure to check out Enzi and our ever-changing herd soon.


(Below is the original blog posted 7/22/15)

Nashville Zoo is proud to announce the birth of a male Masai giraffe. The calf was born Thursday, July 9, weighing 171 lbs. and standing 6 feet, 6 inches tall. He and mom Margarita are doing well in the Zoo’s state-of-the-art giraffe barn.

“While this is Margarita’s fourth calf, it is actually the first male born here at Nashville Zoo,” said Lanny Brown, mammal curator. “Masai giraffes are not very common at zoos, so his birth is great news for the captive population.”

The giraffe will make his public debut on Saturday, July 25. At this time, the Zoo will also launch a naming contest that lets guests vote for their favorite of three options using a pair of old blue jeans. The three options are: Mkali – Swahili for “bright;” Mahali – Swahili for “spot;” Enzi – Swahili for “powerful.”

All denim donations will be sent to Jeans for Giraffes, a conservation initiative that recycles denim into home insulation with proceeds benefiting giraffe conservation projects in Africa. The voting station will be set up at the giraffe exhibit, and each pair counts as one vote. Voting ends August 31.

With the addition of the calf, Nashville Zoo is home to three Masai giraffe and one reticulated giraffe. 

Masai giraffe are one of nine different sub-species and are known for their oak-leaf shaped spot pattern. They are native to the savannahs of Kenya and Tanzania in Africa.

Nashville Zoo’s 1.5 acre Giraffe Savannah opened in April 2006 thanks to contributions from philanthropist Mrs. Maggi Margaret Turner, the Vandewater family and hundreds of supporters who contributed to the Zoo’s “Stick Your Neck Out” campaign.

Posted by Mary Brenna Corr at 9:38 AM