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350-pound baby due next summer at the zoo

ST. LOUIS (AP) — The popular elephants exhibit at the St. Louis Zoo will grow by one next year.

The zoo said Thursday that Rani, a 23-year-old Asian elephant, is pregnant and due to give birth next summer. The zoo’s bull elephant, 26-year-old Raja, is the father.

Raja is among the most popular animals at the zoo. He was the first Asian elephant born there, in 1992. The calf will be his fifth offspring.

The zoo says elephant pregnancy lasts about 22 months. A newborn calf weighs up to 350 pounds. So far, the gender of the calf is unknown.

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