CHICAGO (AP) — After three weeks of guessing, Shedd Aquarium says its new
beluga whale calf is a male.
Animal care staff worked with the Brookfield Zoo Genetics Lab to determine
the calf’s gender by testing the placenta, which contains the calf’s DNA.
Officials didn’t want humans to get too close to the calf after its birth
because that’s when it bonds with its mother.
Spokesman Ken Ramirez says the calf is under 24-hour observation and has
passed many major milestones.
The calf is about five-and-a-half feet long and weighs 130 pounds. Officials
estimate he could weigh between five and six hundred pounds by the time he’s
a year old.