Rare okapi calf born at Lowry Park Zoo - FOX 13 News

Rare okapi calf born at Lowry Park Zoo

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TAMPA (FOX 13) -

Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo has a new member of the family: an okapi, which is a giraffe found only in central Africa.

The calf was born January 6.

It is not only the first birth of the year at the zoo, it is the first okapi birth of the year in the North American population, zoo officials say.

Only 11 okapi births were recorded in 2012.

Okapis have reddish-brown coats with horizontal zebra-like striping on their legs. The unusual color pattern allows them to disappear into dense vegetation in the forests where they are from.

Zoo officials say for the near future, the calf will nest in a "hiding spot" with its mother.

The calf is among 106 living in zoos in the United States.

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