Mother and baby are all white! Berlin Zoo celebrates after polar bear gives birth
- Tonja slept up to 22 hours a day in recent weeks but rose early on Friday
- She became restless and finally gave birth to a guinea pig-seized pup
- Thanks to new camera technology, doctors were able to monitor the pair
Touching CCTV shows Berlin Zoo’s newest recruit being cradled by its adoring mother moments after giving birth.
Tonja slept up to 22 hours a day in recent weeks but the budding mother became restless on Friday and finally gave birth to a guinea pig-seized pup.
Thanks to new camera technology, doctors were able to monitor the pair and captured the pub snuggling up to its mother.
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Tonja went from a slim 230 kg in March to a heavy 390 kg in September, leading staff to believe she was pregnant.
She had also been courted by a large male called Volodya but doctors couldn’t be 100% sure of a pregnancy.
‘Polar bears are among the most dangerous land predators, Tonja to investigate by ultrasound would not have been possible without risky general anesthesia’, explains Dr. med. Sick.
Tonja slept up to 22 hours a day in recent weeks but rose early on Friday to give birth
She became restless and finally gave birth to a guinea pig-seized pup
Doctors chose not to put the large carnivore under anesthetic, instead hoping for a pregnancy.
At around 9pm on December 1st loud smacking noises were heard for the first time for a long time.
Dr. Florian Sicks said ‘this eased my tension a bit.’
He also said that mortality rates are particularly high for young polar bears in the first 10 days of infancy but they are holding out hope for the newest.
Thanks to new camera technology, doctors were able to monitor the pair during the infancy
‘We have the experience of the last two years again made it clear how quickly such luck can be over. In the first 10 days, the mortality rate is particularly high, but we are very confident and keep our fingers crossed.
‘Tonja has always looked after her kittens so well and she does it again. Thanks to the camera technology, I too – even from home – can be there again and again live and watch the two in their casting cave, ‘explains zoo and Tierparkdirektor Dr. med. Andreas Knieriem.
No one will approach the Litter Cave in the next few weeks. Absolute peace of mind for mother and offspring is a decisive factor in the success of rearing, according to the Zoo’s website.
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