View Full Version : Check this Miracle Baby out!!

critter crazy
07-30-2007, 06:18 PM
Baby mule was born April 26th to a mule mom and Jack dad....a one in a million baby! OMG! He's so CUTE!!! At 100 lbs, and 3 months old, they say he is healthy, happy, and energetic.

Foal is fantastic fluke
Born to mule, he's nearly 100 lbs. of zoological surprise
http://mas.scripps.com/DRMN/2007/07/30/435254998_o.jpg Laura Amos Special to the Rocky

The "one in a million" foal is still unnamed because its owners haven't come up with a moniker befitting an animal born to a mule, which would widely be considered sterile. A "name the foal" contest is being run by Mules and More magazine.

July 30, 2007

COLBRAN - He's healthy, playful and nearing 100 pounds.

And at three months of age, the gangly foal with big ears is already a celebrity in the mule world.

That's because the still unnamed foal is the offspring of a mule, the hybrid cross of a horse and donkey that is widely believed to be sterile.

So how could a supposedly sterile animal give birth?

"It's one in a million she became pregnant, and even rarer she brought him to term and gave birth," said owner Laura Amos.

After getting confirmation that the pair were mother and offspring, she sent the story to Mules and More magazine, which published an article. The magazine is also running a "name the foal'' contest.

Amos and her husband, Larry, operate Winterhawk Outfitters in the Flat Tops Wilderness Area. They keep about 100 head of horses and mules and worked the mother mule throughout last fall's grueling hunting season without a clue she was pregnant.

It was the morning of April 26 when Larry Amos rose and looked out the window of their house north of Colbran, about 40 miles northeast of Grand Junction, and saw the foal, much to the astonishment of them both, she said.

The family's veterinarian, John Harris, of Grand Junction, said he was surprised, but he'd heard of it happening before, "so we knew it was possible.''

He said Amos dispatched hair samples of the mother mule and foal to the University of Kentucky, which confirmed a mother-and-offspring relationship. He sent blood samples to the University of California-Davis "and they confirmed mother and son," Harris said.

Harris said a documented case in Nebraska in the early 1980s confirmed that a mule gave birth to one foal, and later another one. Other reported cases, from China, Morocco and Albania, were not confirmed by genetic testing.

Oliver Ryder, associate director of conservation and research of endangered species at the San Diego Zoo, said no one knows exactly how rare this is "because most mules are not put into breeding situations."

He has seen no reports of fertile male mules, but "very occasionally a female mule will be fertile."

But what kind of animal Amos has on her hands remains to be seen until genetic testing is completed at UC-Davis, Harris said. Amos believes the foal's sire was a Jack donkey pastured with her mule, Kate.

"He could be three-quarters donkey and one-quarter horse, and there's an outside chance he could be a full mule," Harris said. "Also, there's a chance she would have been bred to a horse.''

Gordon Woods, director of the equine reproduction lab at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, said he looks forward to learning more about the foal.

"Mules are widely believed to be sterile, so it's unusual, very unusual, to see this," he said.

"It points to our lack of understanding,'' added Woods, who in a previous job at the University of Idaho was part of a team that first cloned a mule. "Because we believe them to be sterile, they may get few opportunities to reproduce. Maybe we're not giving them a chance."

Laura Amos said she'd like to explore possible marketing opportunities for the pair. "But my husband's attitude is, if they don't work, they don't eat," she said.

....I just had to share!! Isn't he DARLING?!?!

http://www.rockymountainnews.com/drm...650951,00.html (http://www.rockymountainnews.com/drmn/local/article/0,1299,DRMN_15_5650951,00.html)

07-30-2007, 06:31 PM
awwww!!! He is too cute! He is the first baby from a mule I've ever seen! Do you think that he would be steril since it was a miracle in himself?

07-31-2007, 03:33 AM
What a cutey! Though female hybrids tend to be more often fertile, as ligers often are, so that would explain it better. I would be very surprised if he turned out fertile also!

07-31-2007, 03:03 PM
That is sooo cool!

I love hearing about things like that,

It was like the shark who had been alone in a tank for seven years who gave birth!


07-31-2007, 09:16 PM
It was like the shark who had been alone in a tank for seven years who gave birth!

WOW! I've never heard of that before! I bet that was an amazingly crazy gestation period! :eek: :D

07-31-2007, 09:24 PM
WOW! I've never heard of that before! I bet that was an amazingly crazy gestation period! :eek: :D

No, it wasn't that long a gestation period - the shark gave birth without help from a male. Some species can do that - it is called parthogenisis.

07-31-2007, 11:14 PM
I've heard of it before but this is the first specific case and the first picture of one. So neat.

08-01-2007, 02:36 AM
that's so neat!

08-01-2007, 09:12 AM
WOW! I've never heard of that before! I bet that was an amazingly crazy gestation period! :eek: :D

here is an article. Virgin Shark (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/main.jhtml?xml=/earth/2007/05/23/eashark23.xml)

08-01-2007, 08:21 PM
Woah! I had no idea that some animals could get pregnant without a male involved. It's crazy to think!