A couple visiting West Midlands Safari Park received a bit of surprise in the form of a giraffe’s head.
The windows of their car were down, and the animal decided to stoop down and look into the vehicle. The female passenger was not sure how to fend off the creature, so she rolled up the window, which caused the glass of the window to smash on the creature’s face. Video of the incident was captured.
Visitors to the park are actually allowed to feed animals residing there at certain points during the drive;
however, park regulations state that vehicle windows must be half shut. Visitors are also supposed to keep their hands outside of their vehicle when feeding an animal.
Naturally, people who have seen the pictures and videos online have commented on the situation.
One commenter called the woman who closed the window when the giraffe’s head was inside her vehicle a “vile moron”.
Another wrote that it is one’s duty when going to a safari to consider the safety of the safari’s “inmates”; the commenter added that the giraffe looked playful, and instead of closing the window she should have patted the giraffe. She missed a golden opportunity. Also, the commenter advised the woman in the video not to do what she did with wolves, hyenas, or lions.
Another commenter, clearly upset, said they hope the woman in the video is never welcomed back by the safari. Doing what she did—shutting the window on the head of the giraffe—is a sign of idiocy.
A spokesperson for the safari told the media that the incident is under investigation.
The great news is that the giraffe was immediately checked over by staff and did not sustain any injuries as a result of the window incident.
Again, visitors to the park—which is located in Bewdley—are allowed to feed animals at certain points. However, on the safari’s website, the park warns that it is possible for animals to carry infections that can be transmitted. Therefore, it advises visitors to wash their hands after touching or feeding the safari’s animals—and also before eating or drinking.
The park, which opened in the spring of 1973, is home to elephants, camel, deer, antelope, reindeer, sheep, cheetahs, tigers, buffalo, African wild dogs, ostriches, penguins, rhinos—and giraffes, of course. There is a pride of white lions, which are rare; the Sumatran tigers are an endangered species. Actually, many of the species are considered endangered or even critically endangered.
There are also many amusement park rides at the safari park; it also features a reptile house, an insect house, and the United Kingdom’s biggest animatronic dinosaur attraction.
It really is wonderful that the giraffe wasn’t wounded by the glass of the car window. Giraffes are interesting creatures, and they have fascinated humanity since ancient times. Best known for their long legs and neck as well as the pattern of their coat, the giraffe is considered “vulnerable to extinction”. There are less than 100,000 of them in the wild. About 1,100 are in captivity.
Giraffes are herbivores, and they use their long necks to reach food that other species are unable to reach. It is necessary for them to eat over 75 pounds of food each and every day. They consume that food with the help of an enormous tongue, which can measure up to 20 inches.
Because they are herbivores, they don’t pose quite the threat to humans that other wild creatures may. In fact, human beings have been interacting with giraffes for thousands for years, and those interactions have been largely positive—at least on our end.
Egyptians would actually keep the creatures as pets, and they were also collected by the Romans and displayed. One was exhibited by Julius Caesar himself in Alexandria way back in 46 BC.
Of course, like most animals, giraffes can be dangerous. They do manage to run 35 miles per hour, after all. While they tend to run from fights, they’ve been known to kill lions when attacked. A kick from one of their quite long legs can do a lot of damage to predators.
A giraffe—Geoffrey the Giraffe—is the mascot of the famous toy retailer Toys “R” Us, which is currently in the process of closing its stores. It filed for bankruptcy protection in the United States back in September of 2017.