Special to the Reporter

Fossil Rim Wildlife Center’s tall toddlers now have names.

Beanpoles’s calf is named “Nettie,” after Nettie Olsen of Keller, Texas.  Students in Keller and Central High School’s Interact Club entered her name when they came down for their annual volunteer weekend.

Kathy’s calf will be called “Snorgie.” Deirdre Ryan of Garland, Texas, chose this unique name. Coincidentally, Deirdre’s mom’s name also is Kathy.The names were submitted as part of a contest announced after the babies were born in late January and early February. Fossil Rim said it was rare to have two giraffe births so close together.

Both contest winners won an overnight trip for two to Fossil Rim Wildlife Center’s Safari Camp and a tour to the giraffe barn with the giraffe keeper. 

Giraffe are around six feet tall when they are born. Snorgie and Nettie now stand at seven feet.  They weighed around 150 pounds at birth, and now weigh 250 pounds.  They will be weaned from their mothers anywhere from eight to 18 months.

The girls already are eating browse.  Most Fossil Rim giraffe begin eating from guests' cars around eight months old.  The girls spend 10 to 16 hours a day eating, and the rest of their time lying down and resting.

Calf-care can be cooperative, in nurseries formed by groups of cows, and these young ones are no exception.  You can often see them hanging out with Jurz and Shiner, Fossil Rim’s teenage giraffe, while mom is browsing a short distance away. 

Fossil Rim manages over 50 species of wildlife, including cheetah, rhinos, wolves, zebra, and the Attwater’s Prairie Chicken.  The center offers a nine-and-a-half mile Scenic Wildlife Drive, unique Safari Camp lodging, guided tours, camps, nature store and café to visitors.  Call 897-2960 or visit  www.fossilrim.org for more information.