First baby in 12 years born on remote Brazil island.
The arrival of a baby girl on a remote island that bans childbirth came as a surprise to everyone — including the mother.
The 22-year-old woman, who did not want to be identified, said she was “dumbstruck” when she gave birth on Fernando de Noronha — a tiny, remote archipelago 350 kilometres from mainland Brazil famed for its idyllic sandy beaches, marine life and hiking trails.
It claims only 3000 residents and not one maternity ward, so pregnant mothers are asked to give birth on the mainland instead.
Unaware she was even pregnant, when the woman felt “something coming down between my legs” on Saturday, the island broke its bizarre spell.
“On Friday night I had pains and when I went to the bathroom I saw something coming down between my legs,” she told O Globo.
“That’s when the child’s father came and picked it up. It was a baby, a girl. I was dumbstruck.”
It came as an even bigger surprise because the mother has given birth before to another child who was born on the mainland. She told O Globo that despite the prior birth she “didn’t feel anything” to indicate she was pregnant.
Despite the fact there was no maternity ward, the baby was transported to the local hospital.
“The mother, who does not wish to be identified, went into labour at her home,” a statement read.
“The family says they were not aware of the pregnancy.”
Strict population controls are in place on the island, now a marine national park and UNESCO World Heritage Site, where hawksbill turtles, dolphins, sharks and endangered species are protected.