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Baby Gorilla Delivered in Rare C-Section At San Diego Safari Park

Evening Edition

A gorilla at the San Diego Zoo's Safari Park delivered her first baby via a rare cesarean section performed Wednesday by veterinarians and human neonatal specialists from UCSD Medical Center.

The Safari Park released videos and photos Thursday of the 4.6-pound baby girl born to 18-year-old gorilla Imani.

The mother went into labor Wednesday morning and showed no signs of delivering the baby naturally by the evening, according to a San Diego Zoo statement. Imani was then taken to the Safari Park's veterinary hospital.

The baby was full-term and is showing some complications possibly linked to the difficult labor. She is in the intensive care receiving oxygen and fluids at the hospital, the zoo said.

"In retrospect the C-section was the right decision," Nadine Lamberski said, the Safari Park's associate director of veterinary services. "We think the health of the fetus would have been compromised if we delayed the surgery any longer."

This is the 17th gorilla to be born at the Safari Park. Eight gorillas, including Imani's baby, are at the park.

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