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Special delivery in Natural Bridge brings, not one, but two babies

Published On: Jul 02 2013 04:28:38 PM EDT
Updated On: Jul 02 2013 06:12:42 PM EDT

WDBJ7

The twins were born June 28, 2013

ROCKBRIDGE CO., Va. -

Meet the new arrivals!
Born Friday at Natural Bridge Zoo, this little boy and girl are just four days old.

"It's quite unusual in the animal business to have twin giraffes so we were very happy," says owner Karl Mogensen.

Happy and a little shocked.
The twins are the offspring of Gabriella and Kevin.
The Mogensens, who own the zoo, knew that Gabriella was pregnant, but didn't know there'd be two babies.

Explains Mogensen, "We were very surprised, the mother was about 22-years old and almost at the post-reproductive stage. So, she was getting larger and larger and we wondered what it was and were a little worried about it. My wife came in at 4o'clock in the morning and she said 'Karl, she had twins!'"

At this point, the twins are under six-feet.
The boy is a little taller, and when we visited- a lot more active than his sister.

They're normal size giraffes - you would think being twins they'd be a little smaller but they're both very large and very vigorous," says Mogensen.

At this point, the twins are separated from their parents.
And, since mom doesn't haven't enough milk for two, they're being bottle-fed.
It will still be weeks before the twins are introduced to the public.

The Natural Bridge Zoo has been fielding calls from around the country asking about the twins.

At this point, they don't have names, but plenty of people are offering suggestions.

To give you an idea how special this - a member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums says just nine-sets of twins have ever been born alive at zoos worldwide.

That's out of more than 8-thousand recorded giraffe births since the 1820s.