The Shedd Aquarium reported on Aug. 24 that their 14-year old Beluga whale Bella had given birth to an “energetic” calf.
The 139-pound, 5’3”-long calf is not yet independently nursing, according to a press release, but a team is in the water every three hours, assisting with feeding her. The release indicated that this behavior is “often the case in the days following delivery.”
Although Bella is a first-time mother, the animal care team is hopeful and encouraged by what they have seen so far.
“As the calf swam to the surface and took its first breath, it brought with it the palpable hope of new life and fresh beginnings — something we all appreciate,” said Dr. Bridget Coughlin, president and CEO of Shedd Aquarium. “We at Shedd Aquarium continue to be humbled by the opportunity we have to share this excitement with the public and create meaningful moments of wonder and learning through the aquatic animal world.”
In addition to this recent addition, another impending beluga calf is due any day now to 31-year-old beluga whale, Naya, at Shedd.