Giraffe reunited with family

Posted at: 11/08/2012 6:20 PM
By: Erica Zucco, KOB Eyewitness News 4

A ten-month old giraffe at the Hillcrest Park Zoo in Clovis has been reunited with her mother after being raised and bottle-fed by zookeepers.

Mother giraffe Jael rejected the giraffe when she was born, so zookeepers put Jerrica - the baby - in a neighboring pen while the mother got accustomed to the idea of her.

“Our only option was to bottlefeed her,” Hillcrest Park Zoo Director Vincent Romero said. “It was a 24 hour job for the first few weeks, of feeding her throughout the night, we took shifts with all the keepers, it was a chore but we're really grateful she's healthy now and doing well.”

This week zookeepers were able to put the two back together.

“Monday we had put her in with mom and observed her and they got along well,” Romero said. “Only thing is, baby Jerrica's real rambunctious and playful, and mom's like, ‘slow down!’”

The Hillcrest Park Zoo is open from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday.