ONE of the West Midlands Safari Park’s youngest residents will be having a giraffe when it celebrates his first birthday next week.

Fennessy, a Baby Rothchild’s giraffe, turns one on Sunday (January 14), and keepers have got him in the spirit by presenting the youngster with a gigantic birthday card and his favourite tasty treat of chopped banana and apples.

He was born to first time mum Arusha and joined the Bewdley attraction’s herd of eight giraffes. He was already a towering six-feet tall at birth and has reached a loft 10 foot but no signs of slowing down.

Ungulates Keeper, Vicky Barsham, said, “As keepers, it is great to see ‘Fenn’ reaching his first birthday.

“He is such an important ambassador for his species considering the ongoing threats to giraffes in the wild.

“We have loved watching him become a confident, but stubborn, young giraffe. He certainly keeps mum, Arusha, and us keepers on our toes, but we love him all the same.

“We thoroughly look forward to seeing him grow and develop in the coming months.”

In the wild, numbers of giraffe are dropping at an alarming rate, which is why any birth is extremely important for the longevity of the species.

The Giraffe Conservation Foundation (GCF) works towards securing a sustainable future for all giraffe populations in the wild and ensuring that these beautiful creatures are protected.

In honour of the work the GCF does, keepers named the calf after the founders and directors of the charity - Dr Julian and Stephanie Fennessy.

Celebrations for Fennessy’s birthday start off a year dedicated to lots of giraffe-themed events for the Park.

During May half term, staff have decided to devote an entire week to raising money for giraffes.

Guests will be able to find out more about the conservation efforts focussed on this species and can participate in giraffe-themed activities.

All of the money raised during the week will go to the GFC to support their vital work and research.