Internet Sensation April The Giraffe Going On Birth Control, Having No More Babies

Jun 7, 2019
Originally published on June 6, 2019 9:14 pm

What's tall, spotted and on the pill? April the giraffe.

An official from Animal Adventure Park in Harpursville, N.Y., has announced that April the giraffe, who achieved Internet stardom, will start contraceptives on Friday and no longer be part of the park's breeding program. The 17-year-old mother of five will now enter senior care.

"She'll continue to be a star of education and conservation initiatives," said Jordan Patch, the owner of the park.

April's two livestreamed births and the park's "giraffe cam" videos of April have, together, been viewed hundreds of millions of times. According to YouTube's statistics, videos of April have been seen 272 million times since February 2017.

Giraffe gestation periods can run around 15 months. April's caretakers saw months-long interest on the park's YouTube channel ahead of the birth of her fifth calf in March.

It was called by the BBC "the most anticipated since Prince George made his appearance in 2013."

On March 16, April's youngest son, Azizi, entered the world weighing 139 pounds and stood 5 feet and 11 inches.

Patch said the park's giraffe breeding program will continue. Park caretakers will replace April with another female, Johari, who will be matched with April's former male mate, Oliver.

April's senior living status will put her in the same area as two of her calves, Tajiri and Azizi.

"It's time for April to retire," said Patch.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.