HOUSTON (FOX 26) - There's a new addition at the Houston Zoo, and she arrived just in time for Father's Day.
A 345-pound Asian elephant was born at the zoo early Sunday morning. The female calf has been named "Tilly".
Tess, a 35-year-old Asian elephant, gave birth to the calf without complication in the McNair Asian Elephant Habitat cow barn under the supervision of her keepers and veterinary staff, the Houston Zoo says.
“Our animal team is thrilled that the birth has gone smoothly,” said Lisa Marie Avendano, vice president of animal operations at the Houston Zoo. “We look forward to continuing to watch Tilly and Tess bond, and introducing her to Houston.”
Tilly began learning how to nurse withing in the first few hours. Tess and Tilly will spend several days bonding behind the scenes before they are introduced to the public. The zoo says the team will watch the pair to share several key moments like communicating with mom and hitting weight goals.
Tilly will also wear a harness for a few days to help her stand stead while nursing, because baby elephants tend to be wobbly when they are first born.
Tilly is Tess' third calf. There are now ten elephants in the Houston Zoo herd -- four males and six females.