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Video and photo gallery: Africa Alive’s baby giraffe is already head and shoulders above the rest

PUBLISHED: 09:54 06 August 2014 | UPDATED: 12:54 07 August 2014

Africa Alive welcomes it's newest resident. A baby giraffe born on 26th July. Pictured with mum Kiara

Africa Alive welcomes it's newest resident. A baby giraffe born on 26th July. Pictured with mum Kiara

Born at 6ft tall and a little over a week old, this baby giraffe has some way to go to be as tall as her mother.

Visitors will now be able to see for themselves after the female calf was born at the end of last month at Africa Alive! in Kessingland, following a 16-month pregnancy.

Both the youngster and her mother, Kiara, are reported to be doing well.

Staff at the park say they are delighted by the good news, particularly as it is the second birth within the giraffe herd this year.

Lead keeper, Sarah Kelly, said: “We have kept them apart from the other giraffes just to give them a bit of time to bond. So far Kiara is doing really well for a first-time mum. We are very pleased because we had to hand rear the last baby giraffe.”

Africa Alive welcomes it's newest resident. A baby giraffe born on 26th July. Pictured with mum KiaraAfrica Alive welcomes it's newest resident. A baby giraffe born on 26th July. Pictured with mum Kiara

The baby giraffe was 6ft tall when she was born and is growing quickly.

Ms Kelly added: “Mother and baby are doing very well. They grow very quickly at first. It is very exciting when a new baby is born at the zoo and lovely for the public as well.”

Gary Batters, director of conservation and education, said: “The birth of a healthy calf is always good news. If you live locally you really should try to visit the park to see her.”

The park’s three giraffes all arrived in 2011, with Kiara arriving from Koln Zoo and the calf’s father, Kimoni, coming from Duisburg Zoo.

There are a total of nine different sub-species of giraffe and it is estimated there are fewer than 5,000 still living in the wild, compared to an estimated 28,000 in the late 1990s. The reticulated giraffe is among the most popular to be kept in zoos and is currently part of a breeding programme being conducted by European Zoos.

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