PHOTOS: Disney’s Animal Kingdom Welcomes Baby Aardvark and Baby Giraffe
Note: This post contains spoilers for episode 5 of Magic of Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
Two baby animals were born at Disney’s Animal Kingdom this month! First, the park welcomed a baby aardvark. The story of the baby’s parents was told in the latest episode of Magic of Disney’s Animal Kingdom, “Aardvark Love.”
The episode follows aardvarks Willie and Peanut, who were set up on a “blind date” by the animal care team at Animal Kingdom as part of a Species Survival Plan. Fortunately, the pair hit it off and a few months later, Karanga was born at Rafiki’s Planet Watch. Karanga is the first baby aardvark in her family and in the park’s history. She’s named after her mother as Karanga means “Peanut” in Swahili.
Disney Parks Blog shared photos of newborn Karanga. Aardvarks are from Sub-Saharan Africa and their long snouts help them find and eat up to 50,000 insects in one night. Karanga was digging around in the dirt in search of ants within a few hours of her birth.
Karanga wasn’t the only baby born this month though. On October 20, Animal Kingdom also welcomed a baby Masai giraffe.
According to Dr. Mark Penning, the calf was able to stand and start nursing quickly. She doesn’t have a name yet, but was born to mom Willow. She weighed 160 pounds and was just over six feet tall at birth.
She is bonding with her mom for now, but will join the herd on the savanna within a few weeks.