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Cameron Park Zoo giraffe Zeke moving to Cincinnati Zoo

The 2-year-old Masai Giraffe will move to his new home in Cincinnati on May 23, 2023.

WACO, Texas — The Cameron Park Zoo is bidding a fond farewell to one of its residents in May.

Zeke, a 2-year-old Masai Giraffe, will be moving from the zoo to a new home at the Cincinnati Zoo on May 23, 2023.

To give Zeke a proper sendoff, the zoo will host a going away party on Saturday, May 20 from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at the zoo's giraffe deck.

The Cameron Park Zoo says the decision to move Zeke to Cincinnati was made after a recommendation by the Masai Giraffe Species Survival Plan. They say Zeke is genetically valuable and will become the Cincinnati Zoo's breeder bull once he reaches full maturity.

While the Cameron Park staff said they will be sad to see Zeke go, his move will come just in time to welcome a new giraffe to the family. Zeke's mother and father, Penelope and Dane, are expecting a new calf that is expected to arrive in late June or early July.

Penelope and Dane are both 10 years old and arrived at the Cameron Park Zoo when they were only a year old. Penelope moved in from the San Diego Zoo and Dane from the Santa Barbara Zoo.

According to zoo, Masai Giraffes are the largest of all the giraffe subspecies, and are native to Central and South Kenya as well as Tanzania. They describe the giraffes as having distinctive, irregular, jagged, star-like blotches that extend all the way down to their hooves.

Masai Giraffes are listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) as endangered, mostly because of poaching and habitat fragmentation.

Those who would like to bid farewell to Zeke can attend the going away party or visit the zoo to wish Zeke good luck in his new home.

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