All things – including an addictive live stream that kept countless spectators engrossed in a giraffe’s pregnancy – must end.
Keepers at Animal Adventure Park in Upstate New York said late Monday that the live cam that captured April the giraffe bringing her calf into the world over the weekend will be taken down later this week.
The announcement came amid news that the new mom had twisted her leg – which, keepers said, “is not unheard of in such long legged animals.” But the response from April’s fans put a strain on the park.
“We appreciate concern but the bogging down of email servers and other platforms is the exact reason the giraffe cam will need be pulled,” the park said Monday in a statement. “While we appreciate the concern, it is interfering with normal park operations and preparation for opening; at a period when our resource of time is limited and cannot be hindered. Please allow our team to do as they are trained to do – we have their care covered!”
The announcement prompted headlines such as “‘Giraffe Cam’ to be taken down after April suffers leg injury,” “APRIL THE GIRAFFE: Park reveals popular Giraffe cam live stream will be AXED on THIS day” and “Animal park: Viewers concerned about minor injury, giraffe camera to be pulled.”
But by Tuesday morning, park officials said April’s walk and stance were nearly back to normal.
“Her leg twist was the equivalent of rolling your ankle slightly – ‘walk it off,’ ” they said in a statement. “Creating news stories out of such a minor thing is a bit of a stretch … but she is a celebrity so headlines sell.”
Indeed, thousands of people watched online Saturday as April’s calf was born at the Animal Adventure Park in Harpursville, N.Y.
The payoff after weeks of anticipation for those addicted to April’s live stream began about 7:30 a.m. – with Adventure Park owner Jordan Patch yelling into a camera from his car: “We are in labor 100 percent!”
There had been false starts before, but this time, two hoofs were peeking out of April’s backside. Then a head. Then a calf, which fell swiftly to the ground in April’s pen.
The park said in an update Monday that April had recovered from the birth but had “a minor misstep this afternoon that lead her to favor her one leg,” noting though that the injury had “already improved.”
But some viewers still seemed distraught upon discovering that the Animal Adventure Park would be removing the live stream.
“Wow, couldn’t you just change your email address???” one person wrote on the park’s Facebook page. The park replied: “We could change it 100 times; it doesn’t curb the issue.”
“The cam will come down between Wed and Friday of this week as planned from the beginning,” officials explained in the comments section. “This decision was made to allow us to focus on the park and our opening.”