Scientists are puzzled after a mystery anteater was born in an all-female enclosure. Short of immaculate conception, there’s no reason for this baby anteater to exist, though we haven’t ruled out the possibility that the baby is some sort of mammal messiah.
Anyway, the story goes like this: Connecticut conservation officers are still trying to figure out how a female anteater gave birth at the LEO Zoological Conservation Center when there hasn’t been a male in the all-female enclosure for months.
Officials removed the only male anteater from the enclosure in August, outside of the six-month gestation period required for baby Archie to have been born.
Conservation officials removed the male, Alf, because they feared that he would kill another baby that was already in the pen.
All that was left was Archie’s mother, Armani, and the young female, Alice.
Other than “immaculate conception,” Marcella Leone, the founder and director of the conservation center, theorizes that Archie’s birth could be a case of delayed implantation. This is when fertilized eggs remain dormant in the uterus for a period of time.
You don’t need us to tell you that animal immaculate conception is uncommon, but we’d be lying if we said it had never happened before. In addition to our mystery anteater born without an apparent father, 2011 saw the birth of a copperhead snake from apparent immaculate conception.
That case was even weirder than this one. Though Archie’s birth at least has a plausible scientific explanation, the copperhead snake didn’t have any DNA from a father, making the “sperm storage” argument a bit more of a stretch.
What do you think of the mystery anteater born after an apparent animal immaculate conception?
[Image via: lightpoet / Shutterstock]