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Baby elephant born at Howletts Wild Animal Park

An adorable baby elephant has been born at Howletts Wild Animal Park.

Keepers arrived for work to discover the healthy new arrival accustoming himself to the world.

The little calf was born in the early hours of Monday. Pic: Laura Bird
The little calf was born in the early hours of Monday. Pic: Laura Bird

Currently unnamed, the small calf is son to to first-time mother Uzuri, 11, and the herd's resident bull, Coco.

He is the 24th elephant to born at Howletts since it's opening in 1975.

Natalie Boyd, head of the Canterbury park's elephant Section said: "We were monitoring the elephant house CCTV from home so we know Uzuri went into labour at 3am.

"She moved outside to give birth and the calf had arrived by 6am.

"Mother and baby are doing well and are being fussed over by the entire herd, especially Uzuri's mother, Tammi."

Keepers kept tabs on the shelter's CCTV
Keepers kept tabs on the shelter's CCTV

The gestation period for African elephants is approximately 22 months.

Calves stay very close to their mothers and drink three gallons of milk every day for two years, but will sometimes continue to suckle for much longer.

Adrian Harland, the park's animal director, said: "What a brilliant way to start December.

"We have been eagerly awaiting the arrival of the newest member of our herd and the entire team are absolutely delighted to welcome him.

The little calf and his mother
The little calf and his mother

"He is already making himself very much at home and meeting the herd, who are even more excited than the keepers."

Howletts is home to the largest herd of African elephants in the UK and the new arrival takes the total up to 13.

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