Potawatomi Zoo to be only zoo in Indiana to feature rare okapi

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("Okapi" by Sarah Joy, CC BY-SA 2.0)

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Potawatomi Zoo is set to become the first in the state to exhibit an endangered African species that’s a relative of the giraffe.

South Bend’s Potawatomi Zoo recently acquired two okapi from Chicago’s Brookfield Zoo. They’re expected to go on display later this month.

Both are males standing about 5 feet tall. They’re related to the giraffe but sport shorter necks, similar long ears and a long tongue.

Zoo executive director Marcy Dean calls 4-year-old Corky and 2-year-old Will “the boys” and says zoo staffers are enamored with them.

Dean tells The South Bend Tribune the okapi are a coup for the zoo because no other zoo in Indiana or Michigan has them.

She says only about 20 to 25 other U.S. zoos exhibit okapi.

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