• Life expectancy In the wild 15yr, in captivity 25yr
  • Average height Male 5.3m, Female 4.3m
  • Diet Omnivore – Feed mainly on leaves, flowers, seed pods and fruits.
  • Average weight 800kg

Conservation status

Critically endangered

Threats include: Live in an unprotected area of southwest Niger in direct contact with an ever growing population of people with whom they must compete for space and for food.


West African Giraffe

Historically these giraffes were found throughout Mauritania, Senegal, Gambia, Mali, Niger and Nigeria. Now they survive only in South West Niger.


Inhabits savannah, scrub, open acacia woodlands and subtropical and tropical grasslands with trees and bushes.


Giraffes are the world’s tallest mammal. Usually considered silent mammals as they are very rarely heard, they communicate with one another by infrasonic sound (below the frequency that can be heard by humans). Have the same number of bones in their necks as humans do.


Female giraffes (cows) breed every 20-30 months. Male giraffes (bulls) will carefully guard females who are in season from other males. Mating occurs during the rainy season and births occur in the dry months. Usually, wild giraffes are born between May – August. Mother’s give birth standing up or walking and the calf will drop 2 metres to the ground. Newborn calves will get to their feet and begin suckling 15 minutes after birth. The weaning period for female calves is 12-16 months, for males it is 12-14 months. Cows tend to stay with the herd but bulls become solitary until they find or obtain their own herd and become the dominant male.



Even-toed hoofed animals, Giraffes and Okapis, Mammals


Join our friendly, knowledgeable giraffe keepers for this hands-on experience: Get severe eyelash envy as you come face-to-face with our bachelor herd in the giraffe loft and feel dwarfed in our Africa building as you come nose to knee with our lady group. Gain an insight into care and meet our resident tall guys and gals up close and personal as you learn about how we maintain the best standards of health and welfare.

Book a West African Giraffe feeding experience
West African Giraffe 1

Adopt a West African Giraffe

Adopt a West African Giraffe

Find me at the zoo

Find us in the Africa house.