On the 18th of August at approximately 9:35am I witnessed one of the most incredible wildlife sightings of my life! A giraffe calf was born in the Mara North Conservancy. The area which it was born is known to the guides as Buibui.

To witness a giraffe birth is incredibly rare and can you believe that two of our lovely guests Monica and John, who I was on drive with, had never seen a giraffe in the wild before. This was their first sighting! A giraffe has a gestation for around fifteen months so what are the chances that we stumble across one in her final hour of pregnancy!

It was the coldest morning I have experienced in the Mara North since arriving in late July. We had spent time viewing some of the Serian lion pride first thing on our drive, they also looked cold.

Our guides Dennis and Judy decided to drive down to the forested area of Buibui. We spotted a giraffe cow on the edge of the forest and Monica and John were excited to photograph their first giraffe up close. I noticed the giraffe cow dip her head to look at us as we approached. Dennis turned around and he had the BIGGEST smile on his face…. I couldn’t work out what he was trying to tell me because of how excited he was but I looked through the front windscreen and saw two tiny hooves protruding from the giraffe cow. This giraffe was in the early stages of giving birth. I excitedly slapped Monica on the arm, something I am known for. The energy in the car was incredible.

The giraffe cow licked the amniotic fluid from her tail.

We parked the car at a safe distance so not to stress the giraffe cow and over the next hour we watched her go through what seemed like a calm labour.

The giraffe would raise and stretch her neck as she pushed and the calf’s legs would protrude a little more.

The giraffe cow sat down briefly throughout the labour and then stood up and it was evident that the calf was on its way.

After about forty-five minutes the calf’s head made an appearance.

Finally, after observing her for over one hour the calf’s shoulders appeared. The giraffe cow was kind enough to turn her back to our vehicle giving us the most fantastic view of her little baby as it slowly started to enter the world.

Gravity took hold once the shoulders appeared and the little calf slipped out and tumbled to the ground, the most dramatic arrival.

The amount of amniotic fluid that followed was unbelievable.

The giraffe cow turned around and immediately started to groom the calf and gently lick away the amniotic sac.

Once the calf was free of the sac it started to pop its head above the grass. It honestly did not look real. It looked like a puppet!

The giraffe cow was so gentle with the calf and spent so much time cleaning it. After about twenty minutes she encouraged the calf to get to its feet by gently using her giant legs to nudge him. She was most persistent.

After one unsuccessful wobbly attempt the calf was up and on its feet. I could not believe how strong it was.

The guests and I decided to enjoy our breakfast in the car whilst watching mother and calf bond. A truly memorable morning and experience that I will never forget.