This is the heartwarming moment an endangered baby giraffe was tended to by his doting mother after she gave birth at a UK safari park.
CCTV cameras caught the moment the as-yet-unnamed 6ft newborn came into the world at West Midlands Safari Park at 12.30am on 13 September.
His mother, Rothschild’s giraffe Arusha, was seen tenderly licking her new baby and trying to nudge him to his feet just moments after he was born.
Keepers were originally concerned the calf was having trouble standing to feed, so had to take the decision to step in and give him a helping hand.
However, the baby giraffe was soon walking tall and is now said to be thriving at the attraction based in Bewdley, Worcestershire.
It is hoped the birth will provide fresh hope for the species, which is classed as endangered in the wild due to loss of habitat from deforestation and poaching.
Lisa Watkins, head keeper of ungulates at the facility, said: “After a rocky start, where there were concerns over him being able to stand, the team worked tirelessly throughout the day and overnight to support both the new calf and his mother.
"Thankfully the hard work and effort paid off and both are now thriving, so we hope to be able to show him off to guests very soon.
“Rothschild's giraffe are classified as ‘endangered’ in the wild, so any successful births are more important than ever.
"We know he will become an ambassador for his wild counterparts, inspiring action and raising awareness of the issues they face in the wild.”
The baby was born to third-time mum, Arusha and dad Rufus following a gestation period of around 15 months.
The arrival is said to be “fantastic news” for the longevity of the “majestic species” as the park is part of a European breeding programme.
The calf’s name will begin with ‘K’ in keeping with all babies born this year at the safari park and brings the number of giraffes there to nine.
The new arrival is expected to join the rest of the herd this week where the public will be able to see him along the safari drive-through.