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Monkey Birth in the Wild

April 16, 2016

jungle

I was intrigued when I read about a rare birth sighting within the animal kingdom. I quickly learned that even monkeys use midwives.

The story summary: A female monkey gave birth to her first infant within fifteen mother monkey and babyminutes late one morning. While sitting in a rhododendron tree, she began twisting her body and calling faintly. After 10 minutes she started screaming, and then another female climbed up the tree. She was an experienced mother, and sat beside the laboring female while the crown of the infant’s head appeared. Once the head was fully exposed, the “midwife” pulled the baby out with both hands and ripped open the birth membranes.

 

Principles of Monkey Birth

Let the mother hold the baby only – for 77 minutes.

Placentas are good food.

Even humans eat placenta, though I don’t think they serve them raw and at your local deli.  What can be learned is that after a birth a woman needs nourishment.

Monkeys rarely birth in the day time.

Birth has never been on a schedule for humans either.  But birth was not controlled by the medical establishment until the last century.

The midwife stayed close.

A good birth attendant, midwife or doctor should stay close.  If not you’ve got a bad attendant or are caught in a bad practice for assisting birth.  In the US birth practice in general can be graded on this factor.

The male groomed the new mother but did not touch his baby.

Birth naturally excludes men.  It’s a woman thing.  The mother-child bonding shouldn’t be interfered with.

The mother evidently benefited from additional grooming and attention both during and after the birth.

This is something that men can help with. Helping the birth attendant is something you can do, and helping the birthing mother is a way to be supportive.

Referenced articles:

https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn23149-zoologger-its-a-boy-monkey-midwife-delivers-baby/

http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20160414-the-monkeys-that-act-as-midwives

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