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Penn Vet, My Special Girl, Foal Cam

 After 355 days of pregnancy, on March 29 at 9:22 pm ET, My Special Girl gave birth to her foal. Watch the miracle.


Giving Birth: A Mare and Her Foal


Meet New Bolton Pioneer, or Boone for short

The colt born with the world watching on the New Bolton Center Foal Cam is now named New Bolton Pioneer, or Boone for short. New Bolton Pioneer will serve as the colt’s formal “show name,” with Boone as his less formal “barn name.”

Boone was the clear winner among the eight names offered by Penn Vet. Of the 2,968 votes cast online, New Bolton Pioneer/Boone received 874 votes. New Bolton Zenith/Zeno, came in second with 550 votes. The other names, in order of popularity, were: New Bolton Equuleus/Stellar; New Bolton Newsworthy/Scoop; New Bolton Original/True; New Bolton Peerless/Tip-Top; New Bolton High-Tech/Scope; New Bolton Broadcast/Signal.

Tens of thousands of people watched live via the Foal Cam as mare My Special Girl gave birth to Boone at 9:22 pm on Saturday, March 29. Dr. Jonathan Palmer, Chief of New Bolton Center’s Neonatal Intensive Care Service, and his team assisted with the challenging, 22-minute birth, which you can view on this page. More than 170,000 people in 120 countries tuned in to watch the live broadcast from the Foal Cam, from February 26 to April 2.

The pair will be moving to New Bolton’s Hofmann Center on our beautiful 700-acre campus this week. You can continue to follow their lives through our Baby Book blog: just click on the purple "Access Boone's Baby Book!" button on this page.

It’s been a remarkable journey. Thank you for your support and many wonderful comments, questions, and ideas.

My Special Girl and her colt

Update: About Our Colt

My Special Girl's colt is doing well and has an excellent prognosis, but he has four fractured ribs on his right side, Dr. Jonathan Palmer confirmed in an examination on April 1. Fractured ribs are common in foals born to mares with narrow birth canals, like My Special Girl. Our colt also has a heart murmur, also common in foals.

Learn more about our colt's condition...

About the Birth

Our mare, My Special Girl, gave birth to her colt at 9:22 p.m. on Saturday March 29 after 22 minutes of active labor. He weighed 104 pounds and measured 39.5 inches from crown to tail.

About the Pregnancy

My Special Girl's pregnancy was made possible by the advanced reproductive technique intracytoplasmic sperm injection, known as ICSI, which involves injecting a single sperm into a mature egg. The embryo was transfered to My Special Girl in April 2013 at New Bolton Center's Hofmann Center for Reproduction. The colt was born on his 355th day of gestation, 15 days past the average of 340 days. Learn more about ICSI...


NBC's Dr. Abraham checks on the mare.Facts about Equine Pregnancy

An average equine pregnancy lasts 340 days. Based on this, we listed her due date as March 14, but it turned out to be March 29.


Penn Vet, My Special Girl, Foal Cam

Our Mare's Daily Schedule

Throughout the day and night, My Special Girl and her unborn foal are monitored carefully to make sure they are both in good shape. Review her schedule so you know when she is in her stall, and what our clinicians are doing.


Foal ultrasound, New Bolton CenterUltrasounds & Videos

Watch an ICSI procedure to learn more about in vitro fertilization. You can also watch ultrasound videos and other videos of My Special Girl's foal.


New Bolton Center ReproductionEquine Reproduction

New Bolton Center's Hofmann Center for Reproduction & Behavior provides comprehensive reproductive services for mares and stallions. Faculty are board certified and conduct research in diverse areas of focus.


Penn Vet NICU at New Bolton CenterNeonatal Intensive Care

New Bolton Center's Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, one of the nation's best, is designed to accommodate the needs of pregnant mares at increased risk for complications, as well as provide their foals with lifesaving critical care beginning even before the foal's birth.

» Learn more about New Bolton Center's NICU...


Meet New Bolton Center's Foal Cam Team

The Penn medical team assembled for this special Foal Cam project includes Penn Vet experts in reproduction, neonatology,and critical care, in addition to the head of the advanced reproduction section at Penn Medicine. 

» Meet the Foal Cam Team...

Foal Facts

  • Foals are born after a gestation period of about 11 months. However, there is a greater variation in normal gestational length in the mare than in any other species, with normal births occurring after a gestation as short as 10 1/2 months or as long as 13 months.
  • Birth takes place quickly, consistent with the status of a horse as a prey animal, and more often at night than during the day.
  • Foals are born with an ability to quickly escape from predators; normally a foal will stand up and nurse within the first hour after it is born and can trot and canter by the next day.
  • A newborn foal weighs about 100 pounds.
  • A newborn foal's legs are almost as long (90%) as those of an adult horse. 

Follow Our Foal!

Our foal, New Bolton Pioneer, or Boone for short, is growing up. And you can follow his journey...



It's a Boy!

At 9:22 pm ET, My Special Girl gave birth to healthy colt. The grey foal weighed 104 pounds and measured 39.5 inches from crown to tail.

Read about the birth of My Special Girl's colt.

For the latest photos and more details, follow us on Penn Vet's New Bolton Center Facebook.

Become a Friend of New Bolton Center

The Penn Vet Foal Cam is brought to you by the Friends of New Bolton Center.

Visit Our Photo Album

MySpecialGirl, a pregnant mare

Questions About
Foal Cam?

For questions or comments about the Foal Cam project, please contact:

Louisa Shepard,
lshepard@vet.upenn.edu
New Bolton Center Communications Specialist