Friday, September 20, 2013

Meet Willow! - New Giraffe Lady :)

I am happy to post my findings about this lovely Lady.  Her Name is Willow.  She was born October 3, 2008 at the Como Zoo in St. Paul, Minnesota.  At about One year old, she moved to the San Diego Zoo, where her Mama was born.

You can view her babie photo and read about her birth here:

If you read my previous post, then you know that this beautiful Lady has joined the list of other disrespected Animals at the San Francisco Zoo.  Falcor, Amani, Belozi, Taymor, Shastyuh, Niya, Sable, Tucker and Skylar (search this blog to learn who these Animals are now) These Animals come to the Zoo with life Names that they know and respond to.

You also know that when I asked about her Name the Keeper told me she didn't know what it was.  I noted this was a flat out lie because I know there is a Name attached to each Animal in its Species Studbook.   I NOW know that when Animals are sent to other Zoo's they come with a printed Transfer Document that states information pertaining to the Animal as an individual, including its Name.  At first I thought maybe it was just me they would lie to because most there hate that I blog and know so much about the Animals, but I asked several other Keepers and they too have been lied to.  I know that there are things that go on that unless you are standing there at the moment it happens, you will not get the true story, so this just confirms the secrecy that goes on, even on a level as simple as an Animals Name.  

That all said, I hope you enjoyed learning about Willow's History, as much as I did  :)    

I will also note that I have heard that some Zoo Staff don't like that I know so much about the Animals. I think that's a very curious thing. Why would they not want people to care about the Animals?  They share very little personal information on the Animals.  To me, the more People know, the more invested they become.   This Caring (which is supposed to be part of their Mission) endears People, and in my opinion not only makes them want to visit more, but also might breed a bit of empathy for those who might not have a sensitivity towards the Animals (aka the misbehaving fools).  I feel that by not sharing personal information, the Zoo robs us of learning about something that we are passionate about.  That we Care about.

Speaking of caring.  All three times I've seen Willow, she never has Browse (Acacia branches) inside her space.  She is right now "holding" inside the corral.  Friday, she had none at all.  Monday she had a picked clean one hanging on the outside of the fence?  AND she was hungry!  That's when I took this photo.  Wednesday, all the other Giraffes had Browse out for them (three different locations inside their space) and Willow had one, but it was again on the outside of the fence?  She stared at the others eating, and it made me so uncomfortable I had to leave.

That's another thing, they always keep the food on the ground outside which in my opinion teases them when they don't have any.  I've seen others try to reach for it, but they aren't as tall as Miss Willow!


  1. Exactly right about the caring. In fact, it has been shown through economic studies that people will let themselves go and maintain their pets. One of the industries that fares well during the economic crisis, pet care. Not that zoo animals are pets but they have the same notice. I travel two hours to goto my zoo.

    1. @Michael Groob- Thank you for your comment. ... This is what I mean about becoming invested in the Animals. Your dedication to spending time with your Zoo Friends is shown by the time sacrifice you make in traveling.

  2. Willow is a beautiful name! I hope they use it- there's not another naming contest, I hope? Names help us see animals as individuals, which of course each is!

    1. @Joanne- Thank you for your comment. Of course the Zoo is not going to keep her Name! They put no value on the fact that an Animal already has a Name. That is why they said she didn't have one :( So, till they decided how to rename her, she will not be referred to by a Name (if history is the pattern). I think Willow is a lovely Name and certainly fits her! She is tall and graceful!

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    1. Hi, Thank you for your comment. Will try to reply more as soon as possible. I'm really behind. I have some lovely current photos of her, as well hear she successfully mated with our male Sam, so we might have a calf at some point! She was pregnant when she arrived here, her Daughter Sarah is turning a Year Old. ... Did you know her at one of the other Zoo's she lived at?

    2. @Anonymous- I apologize, I tried to post reply and my tablet recognized that as delete and your original comment is now gone. ... Willow gave birth to another calf on April 8. Calf is female and named Ingrid. Please check out my Facebook group San Francisco Zoo Animal Friends for some photos and video links.


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