NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) – A giraffe at the Virginia Zoo in Norfolk is on the move. Tisa will soon call a zoo in Melbourne, Florida home.
If you’re wondering how the zoo moves a giraffe, according to Emily Spence, Assistant Curator of Africa, “There are special trailers that are used for shipping giraffe. And typically you do want to ship them when they’re younger, so usually about three years in the cutoff, just because of the height.”
The special giraffe trailer can handle necks as tall as 18 feet, and keepers have to make sure she’s ready for more human interaction while still trying to recognize her natural instincts.
The Virginia Zoo is a member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. That means your favorite animal is part of a species survival plan.
“One thing we get from a lot of guests is concerns of, ‘how does the herd react to losing a member of the herd,'” said Virginia Zoo executive director Greg Bockheim. “And this would happen naturally, moved on, so it’s a natural thing. Managing enormous beats like this is really remarkable. They have to be desensitized to be close to people, to agree to going to their stall spaces. They have to one day walk into a narrow hallway to be loaded onto a trailer, so there’s a lot of work with our animal care specialists.”