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Gorilla birth at Prague zoo shocks zookeepers; They didn't know she was pregnant

By Daniel Uria

PRAGUE, Czech Republic, April 26 (UPI) -- A gorilla at a zoo in the Czech Republic shocked the staff by giving birth when no one was aware that she was pregnant.

The Prague Zoo shared a photo of the surprise mother and her first-born child as they remarked at the unlikelihood of the delivery.

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"Miracles happen! Our female gorilla Shinda gave birth to her first baby," they wrote. "Her pregnancy remained hidden thanks to her appetite so the birth surprised keepers on Saturday morning."

Shinda, a nearly 25-year-old gorilla, gave birth to what staff called a "miraculous" baby on Saturday, despite the fact that the staff believed she was not able to get pregnant.

"I cannot imagine what could have surprised me more. Not only did we fail to notice Shinda's pregnancy but we also gave up all hope that she could have a baby some time ago," said Miroslav Bobek, the director of Prague Zoo. "The baby not only looks OK, it is perfectly all right. It looks that a miracle can really happen now and then."

Shinda had experienced several miscarriages in the past, which the zoo attributed to a hormonal contraception implant that had been placed under her skin before she arrived at the zoo in 2001.

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Zoo staff said this birth went on without any complications as her keepers and the other gorillas kept their eye on the unexpected mother.

Her keeper Vit Lukas said that both Shinda and her baby were in good condition, as the zoo decided to open the exhibit to the public.

"As soon as she had given birth, she started caring after the baby exemplarily – she cleaned it and herself and even though it was her firstborn, she behaved like an experienced mother," Lukas said

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