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10 June 2010, 12:20
The Cotswold Wildlife Park near Burford's taken in its first ever giraffes.
Century (four years old) and Koife (nine years old) have just arrived from Colchester Zoo while Wallace (three years old) has travelled from Blair Drummond Safari and Adventure Park in Scotland.
They are spending a few days out of the public gaze, while they acclimatise to their new surroundings, but visitors will be able to see them soon.
The Park has accepted the three males as part of an international breeding programme. Male giraffes ("bulls") are often difficult to place as a herd can contain several females but only one breeding male.
Jamie Craig, Curator of Cotswold Wildlife Park said:
"We're delighted to welcome these magnificent and fascinating animals. Giraffes are an ideal species to complement the natural landscape of the Park and we look forward to helping them settle into their new environment".
The bulls were transported from their previous homes in a specially designed truck and trailer. The trailer allows them to stand comfortably while cameras in the truck mean the drivers can keep an eye on their precious cargo.
Louise Peat, Registrar at Cotswold Wildlife Park, was responsible for their safe arrival. She explains:
"Giraffes are one of the most difficult animal species to transport as you need to plan well in advance to avoid low bridges and obstacles. We brought in a Dutch animal transport firm, EKIPA, to help. With many years' experience and the latest high tech equipment we knew the boys would arrive in style."
The giraffe is regarded as being amongst the largest, strongest and the most peaceful animals on this planet.