Updated: Jan 20, 2021
- Tennessee, USA -
On Saturday, January 16, Nashville Zoo announced through a Facebook post that their 6-year-old giraffe Nasha, had given birth to her beautiful calf and wrote: “SURPRISE! 💛 Nasha's calf has arrived, just in a different way than we expected. There were some complications with labor and our veterinary team and keepers stepped in to assist with the birth off camera. Both mom and baby seem to be doing fine.
We will release more information about the baby and what happened with labor as we can. Thank you for your patience & support!”
A few hours later, a heartbreaking update announced that the newborn had passed away after she was accidentally stepped on by her mother.
This was Nasha's first birth.
According to the Zoo’s website: “Nasha, went into labor under the watchful eyes of thousands of people tuning in through an online live feed of the event. Shortly into labor, complications developed.
Nasha was not progressing appropriately with her delivery and medical intervention was required. With the help of Dr. Matthew DeLisle from Tennessee Equine Hospital, the Zoo's veterinary team was able to successfully deliver the calf.”
Dr. Heather Schwartz, Nashville Zoo's Director of Veterinary Medicine, said: “The calf appeared to be thriving on an initial exam. We moved the newborn to be with her mother and the two were bonding. During this time, Nasha may have inadvertently injured her calf. The giraffe keepers noticed that the calf was in distress.”
The Zoo explained that the animal care team intervened but attempts to save the baby giraffe were sadly unsuccessful.
An initial necropsy showed trauma to the neck, but further testing will follow to determine if there were any underlying causes for the newborn's death.
The mom is doing well, said the zoo, and her keepers will be giving her an abundance of comfort and care for the next few days.