A 12-year-old giraffe called Forest – a resident of Australia Zoo in Queensland – has been confirmed as the world’s tallest giraffe, standing at 5.7m.
Measuring Forest was a small feat in itself, his keeper, Kat Hansen revealed.
“It took us a number of months to be able to do it,” she told ABC.
Staff had to create a specially marked measuring pole and rig it close to a hay dispenser in the giraffe house, coaxing the animal to stand up nice and straight with the promise of food – all while the cameras were rolling.
Adult males, or bulls, typically measure between 4.6 and 5.5m, with Forest standing a solid 20cm above the rest.
Born at Auckland Zoo in New Zealand in 2007, Forest was moved to his new home at the tender age of two.
Forest has always been very special to us here @AustraliaZoo, and now he’s even more amazing. We are so proud to announce that Forest is officially the world’s tallest living giraffe. Woo-hoo! pic.twitter.com/CyYBv99ueS
— Terri Irwin (@TerriIrwin) July 29, 2020
The entire Australia Zoo family – headed by animal-loving, conservationists the Irwins – couldn’t be prouder of Forest’s achievement.
“Our big boy, ‘Forest’ has just made history being announced as the worlds tallest living giraffe! He is one beautiful gentle giant!” Robert Irwin excitedly told fans on Twitter.
Bindi Irwin – who holds her own Guinness World Record for the most followers for a TV naturalist on Instagram –could not be more proud that Forest has joined her as part of the Guinness World Records family.
“Our sweetheart Forest has officially made it into the Guinness World Records [books] for being the tallest living giraffe! We are proud of our towering guy, he has such a wonderful heart.”
She added: “Giraffes are doing it tough in the wild, and we’re so proud that we can do our part in ensuring this species is around for the generations to come.”
An instrumental part of the giraffe breeding program at Australia Zoo, Forest has sired 12 calves over the last decade, with another on the way.
With Forest’s genes, who knows if one of his offspring could go on to claim the title from dad!
In the wild, giraffes (Giraffa camelopardlis) as a species are currently recognised as vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), with pressure mounting for their status to be upgraded to endangered.
Originally published as Australia Zoo’s very tall giraffe takes out record