UPDATE 4/1/2017 — An internet outage interrupted the stream from Animal Adventure Park this morning. The team at AAP has since fixed the issue.. “There is an internet outage on our end at this time. Our team is in the giraffe barn trying to establish connection,” officials posted on the AAP Facebook page. “Nothing wrong with April and baby and no this is not the hoax many anticipated,” they continued.
“This is not a hoax! The fact the cam went down this morning didn’t help our cause by any means; but we are back up! We have received some lovely snow overnight and this morning, which may have contributed to our signal issues,” the site later posted on their Facebook page.
A recurring theme in many internet chat rooms has been speculation that the whole situation could possibly be an elaborate April Fool’s joke. The park insists that is not the case.
AAP says that April could deliver very soon.
Keep watching the CBS DFW Facebook page for the latest feeds.
HARPURSVILLE, NY (CBSDFW.COM) – The animal park at the center of the viral – live streaming – broadcast of a pregnant giraffe named April said this morning that they expect the calf to be born soon.
Speaking on Facebook Live Friday morning (below), Animal Adventure Park owner Jordan Patch said, “April is showing all signs that we should see a calf in the next twenty-four hours.”
April the giraffe has had three other calves. “A calf is imminent… and I really mean it this time,” Patch continued.
According to a post on the park’s YouTube page, the calf should weigh about 150 pounds and should be about six feet tall at birth. “We’re very happy to be sharing this moment with you,” said Patch.
Patch said the park is setting up a ‘text alert’ system where people will be able to sign up for the latest news about April. He said if they can get it set up soon, that fans will be able to sign up for notifications when April is set to deliver. No word yet on whether that system is ready to go.
Earlier, the park posted an update on their Facebook page, “The staff have been onsite with April all morning, Dr Tim was called and onsite within minutes,” said the post. “All observations, behavior, and predictions suggest a calf today, tonight – we would be shocked to get through the weekend without our newest addition,” the post continued.
Patch also said that it is still very cold outside. “The giraffe yard, it’s not safe yet,” he said. “Especially with the temperature drop we have today, we’re not going to open those doors,” he continued. “We do not want April to get a chill or that barn temperature [to drop].”
Temperature in the barn ranges from about sixty-five degrees at giraffe chest height to eighty degrees at giraffe head height according to the park.
Social Media Phenomenon
Animal Adventure Park has been streaming video of April since February and the broadcast has since become a viral sensation with hundreds of thousands of viewers watching April pace, eat and sleep in her pen twenty-four hours a day.
Visits from the vet and keepers are some of the most popular times for people to watch online. At times, the CBSDFW Facebook Live feed has spiked to well over ten-thousand people watching at any one time.
The official Animal Adventure Park YouTube live video has spiked to well over 250,000 live viewers.
Conversations in the chat room among ‘April Watchers’ range from the finer details of giraffe trivia to discussions about what users are having for dinner. The participants have described them-selves as obsessed. “If I came home from work and this is what my husband did I would throw the computer out the window,” a user named Jane Deford posted in the comments. Lynn Neal said, “Yup my husband says I’m officially obsessed and going crazy.”
Deborah Collier, a frequent and calm voice to the CBS DFW Facebook feed (in a sometimes raucous bunch) says she has been watching since February. “It is bringing people together from all walks of life all over the world with one common goal – to share this miracle with each other,” Collier said in a response to CBS DFW.
When asked why users think this event has risen to such popularity, users responded quickly.
“I am intrigued because this is such a rare animal (and my fav) and it isn’t everyday we get to watch such a rare and miraculous birth,” said Valerie Flippen.
Kelly Southard was just scrolling by one day, saw April and was hooked. “I can’t believe forty-three days has gone by already.”
While some are interested in the science and spectacle of it all, others say it is a welcome distraction to the news of the day. “[It’s] Something positive to watch and see instead of the bad going on in the world,” posted Kristine Sukkert. “This is the positive side of social media,” said Donna Momberger.
CBS DFW has been streaming the video on our Facebook Page at Facebook.com/CBSDFW .