Last week, the Animal Adventure Park in Harpursville, New York set up a “giraffe cam” as its 15-year-old April is getting ready to go into labor. As this is an exciting event for any zoo to have, the park tried to live stream the video of April on YouTube. However, the video was quick to be removed as people reported the content was explicit and contained nudity – the owner, Jordan Patch blamed “a handful of extremists and animal rights activists for interrupting the stream from the ‘giraffe cam’.” Later that Thursday, the live stream was able to resume on YouTube.
According to Patch the animal rights activists failed in their attempts to shut the live stream down when he mentioned “Their efforts have created a media blitz we could not have even anticipated, my day has been spent on the phone non-stop giving interviews around the country and it’s gaining more popularity. I hate to say it, but mission failed.”
Babies are always a great way to attract the public to zoo’s and animal parks! Especially with the controversy over the live video stream on youTube, the story of April and her baby have blown up even more and attracted a bigger audience. After looking on the animal park’s Facebook page, it is doing a great job of informing and keeping the viewers updated with videos, pictures, labor status and live streams.
Some problems the park has been running into are false accounts posting videos of April “already giving birth” and people setting up false donation pages. While there isn’t a lot Patch can do to control others, he is being proactive by putting the word out there in interviews and on the Facebook page that there is false accounts and media circulating. He also is providing the right links and accounts on the Facebook page to direct people to the right places for information.
This live stream event also brings attention and awareness around the world about giraffes and their status in the wild. “With appreciation, understanding we get conservation so in our eyes, it’s a win-win for the species.”