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Allysa Swilley, formerly of Tunkhannock, feeds April and her son Tajiri recently at Animal Adventure Park in Harpursville, N.Y.

Remember the giraffe birth that went viral last year?

Tajiri recently celebrated his first birthday, and is doing extremely well at Animal Adventure Park in Harpursville, N.Y.

Although he’s now about 10-feet tall, toddler Tajiri is not really big for his age - considering he’s a giraffe.

“Male bull giraffes get between 17 and 18 feet tall when fully grown,” explained zoologist Allysa Swilley, a Tunkhannock Area High School grad who works at the park on Saturday.

Swilley was there when Tajiri’s mother April gave birth to him on April 8, 2017. April’s pregnancy became a world-wide sensation when the park broadcast the event via a web cam.

When he was born, Tajiri was five feet nine inches tall, and weighed 129 pounds.

“He’s doing extremely well,” Swilley explained.

People wanting a look at Tajiri and April can see them on YouTube - either by searching for ‘April the Giraffe,’ or ‘Animal Adventure, Giraffe,’ Swilley said.

“This is our first baby giraffe, both at our facility and in my professional career,” Swilley explained.

As a toddler, Tajiri is a bit of a handful, Swilley said. April has been instrumental in helping keep him in line.

“She does the major work, while I get to do the fun stuff,” Swilley explained.

Part of the fun stuff includes giving Tajiri his first treat. Swilley has trained him to stop at a certain point on the ground.

“We’ve got some new training that I’m very excited about,” she explained. “I can’t say what it is now, but people will be able to see it later when they tune in.”

Working with Tajiri has been a great experience, Swilley said.

“It’s provided quite a bit of insight about large animal babies,” she explained.

Tajiri has been very popular with guests visiting Animal Adventure Park.

“People come to see him, as well as the whole giraffe family,” Swilley said. “We’ve had people from as far away as China come to see Tajiri and April.”

The toddler giraffe eats food that is processed to as close as possible to what he would eat in the wild.

“They eat hay all day,” Swilley said about the giraffes.

Tajiri’s favorite food is carrots, which to a giraffe is the equivalent of peanuts to an elephant.

“Or ice cream to me,” she said with a laugh.

Tajiri’s name means ‘hope’ and ‘confidence.’ It was picked by Swilley and her co-worker Corey Dwyer.

“We were sitting around with a pizza, discussing possibilities,” she said. “We wanted something that would affirm his African heritage. The giraffes have had so much trouble. Tajiri’s birth symbolizes hope and confidence for the species.”

In addition to giraffes, Swilley has also been overseeing coatimundi at Animal Adventure Park, which she describes as a “small South American raccoon.”

Tajiri’s name means ‘hope’ and ‘confidence.’ It was picked by Swilley and her co-worker Corey Dwyer.

“We were sitting around with a pizza, discussing possibilities,” she said. “We wanted something that would affirm his African heritage. The giraffes have had so much trouble. Tajiri’s birth symbolizes hope and confidence for the species.”

In addition to giraffes, Swilley has also been overseeing coatimundi at Animal Adventure Park, which she describes as a “small South American raccoon.”