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AMAZING PICTURES: The moment a baby killer whale is born

Report & Video by Lindsay Brown

A baby killer whale has been born at SeaWorld San Diego.

It is the sixth successful killer whale birth in the park's nearly 49-year history.

Kasatka, who is thought to be 37-years-old, gave birth at Shamu Stadium at 6:33 am on February 14 2013.

After a nearly 18-month gestation, Kasatka's calf, estimated to weigh between 300 and 350 pounds and measure between six and seven feet, was born in Shamu Stadium's main show pool following a little more than an hour of labour.

Seconds later, the baby whale instinctively swam to the water's surface to take its first breath.

The park's zoological team members report the mother and baby appear to be healthy, but as with any newborn, the first few days are critical.

The calf's sex is yet to be determined.

"Now from here, we're going to have round the clock care with our veterinary team and animal trainers to monitor both Kasatka and the calf's health," said animal training supervisor Kristi Burtis.

This is Kasatka's fourth calf. The most recent previous birth was in 2004 when Kasatka gave birth to Kalia.

Kasatka's other offspring are Takara (born 1991) and Nakai (born 2001).

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