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The stork pays a couple of wild visits
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The stork was busy at the Shanghai Zoo over the weekend bringing two new babies to institution.

A baby gorilla was born on Sunday, the first gorilla born in a Chinese zoo since 1982, officials said.

Because the mother, Astra, who came from Holland, is nursing the baby closely, keepers do not know whether the two-kilogram baby is a "he" or a "she."

Before the 13-year-old female gorilla came to Shanghai, she gave birth in 2006 but the baby died a month later because of a lack of milk.

Giraffe Kosanro looks after his new-born daughter at the Shanghai Zoo. The 17-yearold giraffe oversaw the birth of his fifth offspring on Sunday night. The baby giraffe is 1.78 meters tall and weighs 80 kilograms. (photo: Shanghai Daily)

"This time the mother is showing great affection to the baby, and we cannot take the cub away from her," said Pan Xiuwen, a zoo official. "We'll know the baby's sex in a couple of months when it grows older."

Officials discovered Astra was pregnant last July, and from then on, the gorilla received special care. Keepers made special meals for her every day and her health during the pregnancy was closely monitored.

Also on Sunday, a female giraffe was also born at the zoo. The baby giraffe (the father, Kosanro, came from Japan and the mother, Haibin, from China) was the fifth offspring born to Kosanro.

(Shanghai Daily February 19, 2008)

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