ORLANDO, Fla. -- For the first time in SeaWorld's history, a Cesarean section has been performed on a shark.
A team of shark experts and veterinarians at Discovery Cove performed the groundbreaking procedure. It was deemed necessary on the whitetip reef shark after the park's animal team noticed a complication six months into the shark's gestation.
Whitetip reef shark give birth to live young and this one carried four pups, which were all born healthy as a result of the procedure. The pups each weighed less than three pounds at birth and were about two feet long.
The Discovery Cove animal team and veterinarians are continuing to monitor the mother and her pups. They are all doing well as well as eating and behaving normally.
While these sharks are currently behind the scenes at Discovery Cove, SeaWorld's sister park, guests can see other whitetip reef sharks through the glass while snorkeling or during the underwater walking tour to explore life under the sea.