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Santa Barbara Zoo welcomes new male Masai giraffe

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Posted at 1:25 PM, Jun 13, 2023

The Santa Barbara Zoo announced the arrival of Theo, a three-year-old male Masai giraffe, who recently joined the zoo.

Theo came to Santa Barbara from the Cincinnati Zoo and was recommended by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums as part of the Masai giraffe Species Survival Plan.

This program aims to maintain the genetic diversity of threatened and endangered species in human care.

As an Association of Zoos and Aquariums accredited institution, the Santa Barbara Zoo says it is committed to conservation and actively participates in Species Survival Plan programs to protect and preserve endangered species.

Zoo officials say Theo's arrival marks an important milestone for the zoo, highlighting its dedication to the survival of Masai giraffes.

His keepers describe him as having the sweetest personality.

With the arrival of Theo, the Santa Barbara Zoo’s Masai giraffe herd now numbers four, including Adia, Audrey, and Raymie, who was born in 2022. The zoo's 16-year-old male Masai giraffedied in February.

The giraffes at the Santa Barbara Zoo are among more than 120 Masai giraffes that live at 28 North American zoos accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.

The Santa Barbara Zoo invites the community to join in celebrating Theo's arrival and to learn more about the importance of giraffe conservation.