Polar bear stillborn at Erie Zoo; cause unknown

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December 16, 2009 6:10:38 AM PST
Officials at the Erie Zoo are hoping lab tests will explain why a polar bear cub was stillborn earlier this week.

Zoo president Scott Mitchell says preliminary tests show the bear may have died in the birthing process Monday, but it's clear the animal never took a breath.

Lab results from a necropsy - and animal autopsy - are still pending.

The stillborn cub was delivered by Patches, a 22-year-old who moved to the Erie Zoo in 2007 from the Henry Doorly Zoo in Omaha, Neb. The same bear gave birth to a cub in Omaha that also didn't survive.