September 19, 2012

News Release

For Immediate Release

Zookeepers Select Newborn Giraffe Calf's Name

Zookeepers announced today the name for a newborn giraffe at Dickerson Park Zoo. The calf, born Monday afternoon to 19-year-old Cheka, will be known as “Pammy J” or “P.J.” The name was selected by one of the zookeepers.

Dickerson Park Zoo’s staff veterinarian confirmed the newborn giraffe is female during a brief neonatal examination Tuesday afternoon. Zookeepers estimate the calf stands approximately six and a half feet tall but a weight is not known.

Although many names have been suggested by the public via the zoo’s Facebook page, for this birth the honor was given to a zookeeper. The public will have an opportunity in the very near future to participate in naming a giraffe calf. Cheka is the first of four pregnant giraffes to give birth at Dickerson Park Zoo, and the next three are expected between October and the end of January 2013.

Cheka and her calf can be viewed in the exhibit yard along with other members of the giraffe herd. The giraffe viewing/feeding deck is open from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. in September and 11 a.m.-3 p.m. in October. (When the deck is not open, viewing is from the ground-level public walkway.) Dickerson Park Zoo is open daily 9 a.m.-5 p.m. through the end of September; beginning Oct. 1, zoo hours are 10 a.m.-4 p.m., weather permitting. For more information, visit the zoo online at, or call the zoo’s information hotline, 417-864-1800.

For more information, contact: Melinda Arnold, Public Relations Director, 417-833-1570 (office) or 417-848-0162 (cell),

Dickerson Park Zoo
3043 North Fort • Springfield, MO 65803
(417) 833-1570 Phone • (417) 833-4459 Fax
Dickerson Park Zoo is a division of the Springfield-Greene County Park Board