Houston Zoo welcomes new baby elephant

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Houston Zoo

New baby elephant at the Houston Zoo.

HOUSTON – There is a new baby elephant on the block at the Houston Zoo, and her name is Winnie!

The 10-year-old Asian elephant Tupelo gave birth to a 284-pound female calf on Wednesday shortly after 11 a.m.

“Our animal team is thrilled that the birth has gone smoothly,” said Lisa Marie Avendano, vice president of animal operations at the Houston Zoo. “We look forward to continuing to watch Tupelo and her baby bond and introducing her to Houston.”

Tupelo gave birth in the McNair Asian Elephant Habitat cow barn under the supervision of her keepers and veterinary staff.

The mother and her newborn, whose name was just announced Tuesday, March 16, will undergo continued post-natal exams and spend several days bonding before they join the rest of the elephants.

During the bonding period, the elephant team will watch for the pair to share several key moments like nursing and hitting weight goals.

This is the first calf for Tupelo, whose pregnancy was the result of artificial insemination since she is related to all the male elephants at the zoo.

The calf raises the number of elephants in the Houston Zoo herd to 12: five males and seven females.