Giraffe Nasha Heading to the Nashville Zoo

Posted September 3, 2015
Recent photo of Nasha.

CINCINNATI, OH (September 3, 2015) –The Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden’s 1-year-old giraffe Nasha will be heading to her new home at the Nashville Zoo, in Nashville, TN, later this month to join a herd primarily comprised of females and their young.

The Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA) Species Survival Plan (SSP) has recommended Nasha’s transfer for breeding purposes. Nasha will provide her new herd with genetic diversity that makes her a good fit for breeding.

“Because giraffes are relatively independent animals with a loose social structure, Nasha and the other giraffes will not undergo emotional stress as a result of her relocation. Moving Nasha to Nashville is a good thing for the future of the population in zoos, and it gives us needed room to continue with our breeding program,” said Bob Lessnau, Cincinnati Zoo’s Director of Animal Collections. Both the Cincinnati Zoo and the Nashville Zoo are excited to watch Nasha embark on a new adventure!

Nasha was born on April 28, 2014 at the Cincinnati Zoo where she became Internet famous before even seeing the outside world. The Zoo live tweeted Nasha’s birth using #giraffebirth. Cincinnati Zoo followers and media outlets watched in awe as Tessa gave birth to her calf over a 5-hour period. The tweets started with Tessa’s initial signs of labor and ended with Nasha standing for the first time. Check out the #giraffebirth tweets.

Newborn Nasha with mom Tessa.
Newborn Nasha with mom Tessa.

Maasai giraffes, also known as Kilimanjaro giraffes, are the largest subspecies of giraffe in existence. Standing at a towering 13 to 17 feet, these mammals are the tallest animals in the world! With 6-foot necks and excellent eyesight, giraffes can detect predators and threats from a much greater distance than most animals.  Native to the savanna and woodland in southern Kenya and Tanzania, they have a diet of leaves, shoots and fruits. Maasai giraffes can live up to 25 years in the wild and have unique jagged spots from head to toe. Although giraffes are not currently endangered, their numbers have steadily decreased in the past century, putting them on the list of “lower risk” species at risk with fairly stable populations.

Make sure to stop by Giraffe Ridge to visit Nasha before she leaves! Male giraffe Kimba and females Tessa, Jambo and CeCe will remain at the Cincinnati Zoo. Giraffe Ridge is FREE with regular Zoo admission.