COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — Zoo officials say the oldest giraffe in North America has died in Colorado Springs after her health rapidly declined.
The Gazette reports the 32-year-old reticulated giraffe named Tamu died Thursday at Cheyenne Mountain Zoo.
The zoo says in a statement that Tamu “passed peacefully and naturally surrounded by keepers and vet staff who cared for her deeply.”
Staff began to notice changes in Tamu’s behavior Thursday morning and she died a couple of hours later. She had been with the zoo since April 2003.
Tamu gave birth to six calves and had more than three dozen grandcalves and great-grandcalves.
The herd at the Colorado Springs zoo now numbers 15 giraffes. Two of its giraffes died earlier this year.