A male elephant calf was born on Labor Day via artificial insemination from a mother who was born through the same procedure
It was a diffferent kind of Labor Day at the Indianapolis Zoo this past Monday.
The facility announced that its elephant named Zahara gave birth to a male calf on the holiday. The event was historic because the calf was the first-ever elephant in the world born via artificial insemination from a mother who was also born through the same procedure.
The calf weighed 262 pounds, which the zoo said is considered a healthy birth weight, adding that he arrived 20 minutes after the early signs of labor. He stood 10 minutes after his birth, and he has already bonded with his mother.
“Zahara’s mother Ivory is known for her short labor times, and this baby came quickly as well,” said Niki Kowalski, Indianapolis Zoo’s assistant curator of elephants, in a news release.
She further added: “What a great way to celebrate Labor Day.”
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According to Kowalski, the calf is Zahara’s first offspring. “The baby boy is adventurous and playful,” she added. “He is very active and curious about all those around him — elephant and human alike!”
Kowalski also said that Zahara has been very attentive to her newborn and is frequently monitoring him.
The zoo said that Zahara’s offspring is the seventh calf to be born there. Its president and CEO, Robert Shumaker, said in a statement: “We are especially excited as this calf will begin a third generation in the herd at the Zoo.”
The facility also added that the “first and second African elephants in the world to be conceived and successfully born through artificial insemination” also occurred at the Indianapolis Zoo in 2000.
The newborn has not yet been named, said the zoo via a Facebook post, adding that he will remain indoors with the rest of the herd. Per NBC's Indianapolis affiliate WTHR, the facility is hoping that the calf will make limited appearances during its Zoo Boo event from Sept. 27 to Oct. 31.
PEOPLE reached out to the Indianapolis Zoo for additional information.
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