NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Central Park Zoo is welcoming a lamb born as staff members were readying the zoo for Tropical Storm Irene.

The 8-pound newborn was found cuddling with her mother after she was born in the Tisch Children’s Zoo on Saturday. She has been named Irene Hope.

Assistant Curator Susan Cardillo says the little lamb was a surprise because sheep rarely give birth in late August. Typically, the sheep breed in the fall and give birth in March or April.

“On a day of great uncertainty for New York City, the lamb brought smiles and hope to all of us at the zoo,” said  Cardillo.

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Irene Hope, with mother, Truffle, at the Wildlife Conservation Society's Central Park Zoo. (credit: Julie Larsen Maher/WCS)

After making sure she was healthy, zoo workers returned Irene Hope to her mother to nurse. As flood waters receded early Sunday, Cardillo was relieved to find lamb and ewe resting peacefully.

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Irene Hope’s mother is Truffle and her father is Sid. She is a Southdown sheep, a breed that originated in Sussex, England.

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Irene Hope will be on exhibit at the Tisch Children’s Zoo beginning Thursday afternoon.

Central Park has six Southdown sheep: one ram, three ewes, and now three lambs.

The eye of Irene passed right over Central Park.

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