Two Florida Giraffes Dead After Lightning Strike


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Shelby Talcott Senior White House Correspondent
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Two giraffes were struck by lightning and died on May 3 at the Lion Country Safari in Florida, the attraction announced on Tuesday.

Lily and Jioni, the two giraffes, were in their pasture when a thunderstorm came through, according to a Facebook post by the Lion Country Safari. The attraction conducted pathology tests to confirm the reason for their death, and waited for the results to announce the giraffes’ passing.

Lion Country Safari, which is in Loxahatchee, said that they have a lightning detection system and open animal shelter areas when storms pass through, but they can’t force the animals to use the shelter, according to WPTV.

“We do try to provide them a lot of choice,” said Haley Passeser, a spokesperson for the safari, according to WPTV. “If they don’t choose to seek shelter, there isn’t a lot we can do to encourage them to.” (RELATED: Giraffe Dies After Smashing Head On Overpass)

The pathology tests confirmed that Lily and Jioni died instantly because of lightning. The safari is reviewing their procedures to make sure that the environment is safe for the remaining animals, according to WPTV.

“We continue to mourn our two incredibly lovely and charismatic giraffes,” the safari said according to NBC News. “They will both be sorely missed.”

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