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'Lonely' giraffe in Mexico begins long journey to new home

Benito the giraffe is fed before his long journey from Ciudad Juarez in northern Mexico to a safari park in the central state of Puebla
Benito the giraffe is fed before his long journey from Ciudad Juarez in northern Mexico to a safari park in the central state of Puebla.

A "lonely" giraffe living in harsh conditions in northern Mexico is heading to a safari park to begin a new life after a campaign by animal rights activists.

The male named Benito began the roughly 2,000-kilometer (1,200- mile) journey on Sunday from Ciudad Juarez near the Mexican-US border to Africam Safari in the central state of Puebla.

According to the zoo management, he will live with other giraffes in conditions more similar to his natural habitat.

"It's important that Benito be in favorable conditions, in an enclosure where he can be with a controlled temperature, with all the food he needs," said Africam Safari director Frank Camacho.

"We're going to incorporate Benito in a very big herd, very heterogeneous, where there are adults and youngsters," he added.

The , in a special trailer accompanied by a team of experts, is expected to take about 50 hours in total.

The move follows a campaign by conservationists who criticized the unsuitable living conditions in Ciudad Juarez, where the giraffe was at the mercy of extreme temperatures.

In mid-January, a judge ordered that Benito be sent to Puebla.

"Today's a very happy day for us," said Maria Ruiz Varela, a member of the "Let's Save Benito" campaign.

Benito the giraffe is prepared for a road journey of roughly 2,000 kilometers to his new home
Benito the giraffe is prepared for a road journey of roughly 2,000 kilometers to his new home.

"It's the culmination of almost nine months of hard work, trying to make the citizens aware, and asking the government to listen to our pleas, to let Benito go to a sanctuary, to a better place where he could have a good quality of life," she added.

The won the backing of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), a US-based animal rights group, which urged its supporters to "speak out for a lonely giraffe in Mexico."

It said that Benito had been living alone in a "trash-strewn enclosure lacking grass, shade, and appropriate shelter in a region that experiences ."

© 2024 AFP

Citation: 'Lonely' giraffe in Mexico begins long journey to new home (2024, January 22) retrieved 17 April 2024 from https://phys.org/news/2024-01-lonely-giraffe-mexico-journey-home.html
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