Pets & Animals

LA hippo on birth control surprises staff with newborn

Los Angeles Zoo guests were given an extra treat on Halloween.

One of the zoo's hippopotamuses, Mara, gave birth to a baby on Friday afternoon in her exhibit. While the news of any newborn is exciting, Mara's birth was especially so, as the 10-year-old hippo was on birth control. 

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Mara and her newborn relax in their enclosure on Saturday.

"Animal care staff had a hunch a birth was imminent due to Mara's symptoms, such as weight gain," reads a press release from the zoo. "But they had limited testing options to confirm their suspicion." 

Sure enough, their suspicions proved to be correct with the arrival of the newborn — the first hippo calf the zoo has had in 26 years. 

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The zoo has not yet confirmed the sex of the baby, but guests can already check the little one out in the exhibit. 

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