April the Giraffe, who in a few short months became a global media sensation, gave birth to a boy on Saturday - drawing a mammoth audience on YouTube to rank among the most-viewed live events ever on the video service. The money raised will be used for giraffe conservation efforts, the charity Ava's Little Heroes and also go toward supporting the Animal Adventure Park where April the giraffe and her calf reside.
According to the team, the calf weighs 129 pounds and stands 5 feet 9 inches tall.
Patch says April is "recovering perfectly" following the delivery. Baby is strong and well, nursing like a champ.
The 15-year-old giraffe delivered her calf shortly before 10 a.m. EDT in an enclosed pen at the zoo in rural Harpursville.
Giraffes have one of the longest gestation periods of any animal, being pregnant for 14 to 15 months on average. About 45 minutes after he was born, the calf stood on wobbly legs while his mom helped keep him steady. Zoo owner Jordan Patch said both mom and calf were doing fine.
"We're going to see that baby and mom really develop a lovely bond", Patch said.
Patch said the natural curiosity surrounding giraffes and their birthing process was a huge factor in drawing crowds.
April gave birth to her fourth calf yesterday. The proud papa is a 5-year-old giraffe named Oliver.
Though some fans got frustrated when April's due date of mid-January to mid-February came and went, many others continued to tune in.
April is very protective of her lovely son, as many new mothers are wont to be. A GoFundMe fundraiser page that initially set a goal of $50,000 sat at more than $125,000 on Saturday morning.
The contest is being held for 10 days, and then a second round of voting, which will be narrowed down to the top 10 names, will be held for five days.
You can follow the baby's progress there, and through regular text updates.