Well, y’all, the two-year wait is finally over.
Tupelo, a 10-year-old Asian elephant who calls the Houston Zoo home, got pregnant nearly two years ago after a successful artificial insemination (which had to happen because Tupelo is related to the Zoo’s male elephants), and on Tuesday morning she gave birth to a 284-pound girl calf.
Now, we at Houstonia understand if you forgot she was even pregnant; it’s been a stressful past year, but now the baby is here and healthy, according to the Zoo, and we think that’s something to be happy about.
Mom and baby are both healthy and taking to their new life well, says the Zoo.
“Mother and baby will undergo continued post-natal exams and spend several days bonding before they are ready to join the rest of the herd,” according to a Zoo press release Thursday. “During the bonding period, the elephant team is watching for the pair to share several key moments like communicating with mom and hitting weight goals.”
Tupelo, a first-time mom, was born at the Zoo in 2010 to mom Tess, who is now 37 and also expecting to give birth in the next few weeks; it’ll be her fourth child.
Tupelo’s calf, named Winnie, brings the total of Asian Elephants at the Zoo to 12. She comes less than a year after male calf Nelson was born, and with Tess’ baby arriving soon, there are bound to be some pretty adorable baby elephant playdates at the McNair Asian Elephant Habitat.
If you’d like to witness the cuteness, head to the Houston Zoo—9 a.m.-5 p.m. daily—but be sure to reserve tickets online.