Artis zoo welcomes new baby elephant, born Sunday

A baby elephant was born at the Artis zoo in Amsterdam on Sunday, the zoo announced in a press statement. Baby girl Sanuk was born in just two minutes, after mother Thong Tai was pregnant for 631 days, or 21 months.

Sanuk is Thong Tai's fourth calf. Thong Tai is the matriarch of the Asian elephant heard at Artis. As in the wild, the mother chose a female relative from her herd to support her during birth. In this case Thong Tai chose her first daughter Yindee, who was born in 2005.

The brand new baby elephant was born at 6:07 p.m. on Sunday. At 8:45 p.m. she nursed for the first time.

If a baby elephant does not seem to respond after birth, an experienced female elephant will encourage the baby to breathe and stand up by braking open the membrane with a paw and nudging the young. This also happened with Sanuk. She was on her feet within minutes after birth.

Te coming days will reveal when newborn Sanuk and Thong Tai will be officially introduced to the public. This all depends on the weather and how mother and baby develop. More information about the baby elephant can be found on the Artis website.