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Last Updated: Wednesday November 11 2009 11:21 GMT

Shark pups born after shock bite

A female shark similar to the mother shark at the aquarium (Dennis King)

Workers at an aquarium in New Zealand got a big surprise when one of their sharks was bitten by another.

But it wasn't the bite that caused the shock, it was the four baby sharks that popped out of the wound.

The shark was pregnant and the bite allowed the babies to swim out. Visitors at the aquarium spotted the babies floating in the water.

Staff came to the rescue, removing them from the tank before they could be eaten by other sharks or stingrays.

Four other baby sharks were later found in the mother.

All eight babies have survived and aquarium staff say the mother is doing well, but they are keeping a close watch on her as a wound like this is very unusual.

Experts at the aquarium said this strange incident probably saved the lives of the babies as if they'd been born in the regular way it was likely they'd have been eaten by other sharks before anyone had found them.



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