“Disney’s Animal Kingdom Welcomes Baby Okapi Elijah: A Tribute to Living Legacies”

"Disney's Animal Kingdom Welcomes Baby Okapi Elijah: A Tribute to Living Legacies"

Meet Baby Okapi Elijah at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

  • Disney’s Animal Kingdom welcomes their first baby okapi, Elijah, born after almost a decade since the last okapi birth.

  • Baby Elijah was named after Elijah Clay, a 50-year veteran cast member at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

  • The okapi, a native of the Democratic Republic of Congo, is often referred to as a “living fossil” due to its primitive characteristics dating back millions of years. For Disney, it’s one of their “living legacies”.

  • Disney’s Animal Kingdom is renowned for its effort in wildlife conservation, promoting the respect and understanding of animals and their natural habitats.

  • Elijah Clay, the namesake of the baby okapi, started his career as an Animal Specialist and later moved to the animal nutrition department because he saw the difference proper nutrition makes in animal’s lives.

  • Clay’s dedication to animal well-being, his decades of service, and his influence within the Animal Kingdom community have earned him this distinctive honor.

The Realist’s Take

So the Animal Kingdom has a new tiny-legged, long-necked, stripe-bottomed prince named Elijah, and he’s already turning heads and melting hearts. Named after a cast member who is as much a part of the furniture as the Mickey-shaped topiary (a whopping 50 years of service, people!), this mini ‘living fossil’ is the newest quirk in Disney’s fauna-tastic portfolio. But remember, although this 14-day-old okapi, part zebra-lookalike, part giraffe-cousin, is incredibly cute, he’s more than just a Disney mascot. He’s a reminder of a wild world out there that we need to protect and understand. In the iconic words of our favorite Lion King meerkat, Timon, “It’s the circle of life!” And we’re here for it, one stripe at a time!