Niabi Zoo Giraffe Baby Named Print
News Releases - General Info
Written by Marc Heinzman, Assistant Director   
Thursday, 03 November 2011 15:16
Coal Valley, IL – November 1, 2011 - Niabi Zoo has announced the name for their female baby giraffe which was born on September 9th, 2011.

After hosting a naming contest for the month of October, the name Miya (mee-yah) emerged as the winner. Miya was originally suggested as a finalist choice by Niabi Zoo zookeeper Lisa Murphy, who came up with the name by combining parts of both parents’ names, Mimi and Kenya. The name also means “increasingly beautiful” in Japanese.

In a change of pace from the naming contests held by Niabi Zoo in the past, three finalist names were chosen by zoo staff, and then voted on by zoo guests with their pocket change. The name which collected the greatest dollar amount would be declared the winner.

Overall, the contest earned over $1,000, with the name Miya winning by a landslide, according to Assistant Zoo Director Marc Heinzman. “Miya earned 53% of the vote,” said Heinzman. “The other two names were very close to each other in amount of money earned, but Miya actually earned more money than those two combined. Miya was clearly the community favorite, and we’re very happy to be able to have the Quad Cities community help us name our newest addition.”

The other two finalist name choices and their meanings were Nyah (Purpose) and Victoria (Victoria Falls, the tallest waterfall in the world and located in Africa). All the proceeds from the naming contest will go toward the construction of a planned new elephant exhibit at Niabi Zoo.

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