Memphis Zoo welcomes baby girl giraffe - Mid-South News, Weather, Traffic and Sports | FOX13

Memphis Zoo welcomes baby girl giraffe

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Mother Marilyn nurturing The Memphis Zoo's newest giraffe Maliki, born Jan. 16, 2013 (courtesy photo) Mother Marilyn nurturing The Memphis Zoo's newest giraffe Maliki, born Jan. 16, 2013 (courtesy photo)
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (FOX13) -

A 5 1/2-foot-tall reticulated giraffe was born 10 days ago at the Memphis Zoo.

In a statement Friday by The Zoo, the 115-pound baby girl giraffe is named Maliki. She was born Jan. 16. Her mother is 19-year-old Marilyn. This is the fourth calf for Marilyn, and the sixth sired by Kenya in the past seven years.

The addition of Maliki increases The Zoo's giraffe herd to nine.

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"Marilyn is a great, experienced mother," said Matt Thompson, Director of Animal Programs at The Memphis Zoo. "We're always excited about the birth of a healthy baby, but I'm especially pleased because Maliki inherited her mother's beautiful coloring. She has her mother's dark face, which is something the other calves haven't had."

Baby Maliki and her mother, Marilyn have already been out on exhibit, The Zoo said. She will be spending short amounts of time on exhibit between 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., however, due to cold temperatures, The Zoo's animal staff will continue to rotate them on and off exhibit.

Reticulated giraffes give birth standing, and are one of the few animals born with horns on their heads. This is to protect them from a 6-foot fall to the ground at birth. Reticulated giraffes are native to Africa and can grow between 15 and 17 feet tall. Females weigh around 2,500 pounds, while males weigh around 3,500.

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