Newborn Okapi Calf Takes First Steps at Cincinnati Zoo

The Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden in Ohio welcomed a new okapi calf on January 13. The calf was born to mom Kuvua at 4 pm and stood up within 45 minutes of its birth.

According to the zoo, “every birth is significant for the survival of their species.”

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) lists the okapi, also called the forest giraffe, as an endangered species. Their decreasing population is estimated to be between 15,000 and 25,000. Okapis have been declining due to deforestation, hunting, and an increased human presence in their native Congo, according to the IUCN.

The zoo said Kuvua will bond with the baby “until the weather is nice enough for them to explore their outdoor yard.”

This video shows Kuvua standing over her calf, which walks around tenderly on shaky legs. Credit: Cincinnati Zoo via Storyful