Because these photographs of adult animals are pretty common, most of us don’t think about the fact that these creatures were once tiny fetuses getting ready to make their mark on the world. This period of their life is not something we get to see on a regular basis, which is why these photos of animals in the womb are so amazing.
When you think about it, the world is pretty amazing. Although we can often get caught up in our own lives and the lives of other human beings on this planet, it’s fair to say that the Earth is full of incredible creatures. These animals roam alongside us on a day-to-day basis, and although many of us won’t ever get the chance to see them in person, it’s easy to find pictures of them online. In fact, a simple internet search will show you countless photographs of these animals across the world. But have you ever wondered what these animals looked like before they were born?
A joey in its pouch
The kangaroo is one of the most incredible creatures out there, and this is largely due to its gestation sequence. That’s because a mother kangaroo grows her joey unlike many other animals in the world because it involves a pouch. After a month-long gestation period, a blind and hairless baby crawls its way out of its mother and into her pouch.
It then stays there for around 120 to 400 days, where it will grow hair, develop its sight, and feed off the mother. This picture shows the baby joey in its pouch, and you can see just how tiny it is! It’s amazing to think that this will soon be a jumping kangaroo.
This tiny snake
Although many people fear snakes, they are actually some of the most intriguing animals out there. That’s because their gestation process changes from species to species. There are some snakes that give birth to live young, while there are others that will lay eggs and then wait for their young to hatch. Even then, there is a difference within the species that lay eggs.
While some give birth to eggs early on and then incubate them for a while, there are others who will incubate their eggs inside of them before laying their eggs at the last moment. This amazing photograph shows a tiny snake fetus, and you can see that it looks a lot smaller than what its mother would look like. Nevertheless, the snake-like body is definitely recognizable.
A chimpanzee in the uterus
It’s long been held that primates are the closest thing to the human species, which is why it might not surprise you to see this image of a chimpanzee in the uterus. As you can see, this little guy doesn’t look too different from a human baby in the womb.
It’s squashed up into the fetal position, it’s head and ears are almost fully formed, its hands look just like human hands, and it is residing in an amniotic sack many of us have seen ourselves. Of course, there are a few differences! For starters, this adorable chimp not only has a tail but also has much larger feet to aid it as it climbs through trees and wanders around the rainforest.
A turtle embryo
Turtles are recognized by their hard outer shell and their large eyes, and you don’t need to look too hard at this turtle embryo to see those features! Although its shell may only be small at the moment, there’s no doubt about the fact that the shape and the segments are already there and protecting the embryo in the process.
This fetus is only tiny, but when it’s at this stage, it doesn’t take the turtle too long to hatch out of its shell. The incubation process normally takes around 60 days, and then these tiny little guys will be ready to take the world by storm. A newborn turtle will only be around 2.75 to 8.5 inches in length, but they soon get bigger and bigger as the weeks go by.
The dolphin fetus
Dolphins are some of the most majestic mammals this world has to offer, and you may have been able to marvel at their beauty in the wild yourself. Like many other mammals, dolphins normally only carry one calf at a time. However, that doesn’t mean that the momma dolphin can’t welcome twins into the world on a rare occasion!
The gestation of a dolphin changes dependent on the species, but it’s normally between 10 to 18 months. Of course, these animals aren’t the smallest animals in the world, which is why this picture might surprise you. This tiny dolphin fetus is only taking up a small amount of space in its mother’s stomach – and this is why it’s sometimes hard to determine whether a dolphin is pregnant or not.
A perfect pup
If you’ve ever had the pleasure of seeing puppies in the flesh, you’ll know that they are adorable and tiny all at the same time. They are truly a sight to behold, and they have won over the hearts of countless people across the globe. Yet, it seems as though they don’t instantly become cute as they take their first breaths.
Puppy fetuses are just as cuddly and become fully formed during the weeks in the run-up to their birth. As you can see from this picture from inside the womb, this puppy has already developed its tiny little claws and an adorable little tail! Most puppies are born in litters, which means that they share this womb with their brothers and sisters.
A growing mole
There are many animal embryos that look nothing like the animal they eventually grow up to be, and it’s fair to say that this mole embryo is one of them. In fact, it looks more like a platypus with its prominent nose! While you probably haven’t seen a huge amount of moles over the course of your life, there’s no doubt about the fact that there are loads of them in the world.
What’s interesting about these animals is that their gestation period doesn’t last very long at all. Moles normally mate between February and May, and it will take the mother just 30 to 45 days to welcome their little ones into the world. They will then stay with the mother in her nest for a few weeks before heading off on their own.
The early stages of a horse
Humans are extremely close to horses, which is why this picture might be quite surprising. There are many people around the world who have grown up with horses or have ridden them on the odd occasion. In fact, you might have even seen a horse give birth to a beautiful foal.
These foals can normally stand on their own four feet within just a few hours, and they look like a smaller version of the adult horses we know and love. However, this horse fetus is unlike anything we have ever seen before. Although you can just about make out the hooves, the head of the horse fetus is completely different. In this early stage, the fetus hasn’t quite developed its ears or its long nose.
A developing tiger shark
Tiger sharks are considered some of the most dangerous sharks out there because they are one of the few species of shark that has been known to attack humans unprovoked. Of course, this little guy doesn’t look too dangerous. While you can already see the developing razor-shark teeth on this shark fetus, it looks relatively small and harmless.
However, this won’t last for too long. After around a 13 to 16 month gestation period, the mother will give birth to a large number of small pups that will come in at around 25 inches long. Before too long, they learn to catch their own food and build up their immense strength.
A cow in the womb
Cows are a huge part of our lives, whether you simply drive past them on the way to work or put their milk in your morning cereal. But have you ever wondered what a cow looks like in the womb? You may have seen a newborn calf before, but there’s something very different about a newborn calf and a fetus that is still in utero.
It’s quite difficult to see that this is a cow, considering the tell-tale features haven’t developed just yet. The cow is hairless, its eyes have yet to open, and its ears are still extremely small. However, if you look closely, you can just make out the first stages of the baby cow’s hooves.
A growing baby bird
The world is full of weird and wonderful birds, and most people know that birds lay eggs before they hatch into glorious babies. However, what you might not know is just how incredible the inside of the egg looks. The space inside this shell is perfectly formed to take care of the baby bird and allow it to grow in strength and size, and you can just about see the formation of this baby bird’s little beak and wings.
Although this bird doesn’t have any feathers just yet, it won’t take long for this little one to grow into his wings and take flight. Each breed of bird takes a different amount of time to hatch, which means that there are countless babies hatching right now!
These two polar bears
It’s sad to see polar bears struggling in this climate, but it’s fair to say that they are extremely resilient animals. Although it must be tough to survive in such cold and harsh conditions, these animals seem to have got their breeding practices down to a fine art. The polar bear mating season normally occurs between April and June, but that doesn’t mean that the female polar bear instantly becomes pregnant.
That’s because the food is scarce during this time, and the female won’t be able to start her gestation until she has enough weight on her body. This normally happens a few months later. Polar bears often have multiple births, and as you can see, these two little ones are already bonding! When they are born, polar bear cubs normally weigh less than one pound.
A shark in the womb
Sharks are one of the most feared creatures in the world, and it’s not hard to understand why. These giant animals have razor-sharp teeth and have been known to get pretty rough and ready when it comes to their dinner. Because of this, it’s hard to believe that this tiny shark in the womb will one day grow up to become one of the most dangerous animals to swim beneath the surface.
As you can see, a shark fetus does have the typical shark shape – with its pointed nose and its fins – but doesn’t quite look like the adult sharks we see swimming around. However, the shark gestation period can often continue for around two years, so there’s still time for this little one to grow.
The opossum fetus
There’s a high chance that you’ve seen an opossum before. While they aren’t domesticated animals, they will often set up their homes close to human civilizations. In fact, you may have seen one roaming around your backyard! Opossums are very similar to kangaroos in that they do not grow their young inside of them.
Instead, they give birth to a jelly-bean-sized fetus after a gestation period of around 12 to 13 days. It’s then down to this fetus to climb up its mother and into her pouch. The little one will then latch on to one of her teets and feed off the milk for around four months. After that time, the opossum will remove itself from its mother and head outside of the pouch to be carried on her back.
A growing wolf
Wolves are often considered to be dangerous and scary, but when you see a growing wolf like this, it’s hard to see how people can be frightened of them. In this form, the wolf fetus looks serene and calm and looks like it’s ready to be born so it can make its mark on the world. Although experts are still discovering more and more about these animals every single year, we do know some of the main facts surrounding a wolves gestation period.
The normal gestation period for a wolf is around 63 days, and the mother gives birth to a litter once every year. While in the womb, the wolf fetus grows to about a pound in weight but doesn’t develop a huge amount of hair or the ability to hear or see until a few weeks after it’s born. Interestingly, a wolf looks very similar to a chihuahua in the womb!
A small mouse
If we didn’t know that this was a mouse, we probably wouldn’t have guessed that to be the case. That’s because this little embryo looks nothing like the mice we often see scuttling around the place. While there is a slight hint of a long tail, that’s where the similarities end.
The gestation period of mice is different when it comes to each species, but it’s normally between 20 and 30 days. The female mouse will normally give birth to a litter of around 3 to 14 young at a time, which means that they need to be pretty small to fit in her womb. Newborn mice are normally small and hairless, and you can’t even see the fact that they have ears for the first few days!
A kitten in the womb
Kittens are recognized by their adorable whiskers, even if they do tickle your skin as your cat skulks past you. In this picture of a kitten inside the womb, you can already see the hair follicles on its face, even though it looks to be in the very early stages of development.
With very tiny ears and closed ears, it’s clear to see that this kitten has a way to go before it’s fully ready to be born into the world, but there’s no doubt about the fact that it’s getting there. It’s also extremely weird and wonderful to see where the kitten builds up its strengths. A cat’s amniotic sack is full of nutrients that will help the kitten grow big and strong.
The kangaroo embryo
We’ve already seen what a kangaroo fetus looks like when it’s climbed its way up into its mother’s pouch, but we’ve rarely got to see what an actual kangaroo embryo looks like. Well, this image shows us just that! In this picture, you can see a kangaroo embryo growing inside of its mother.
It hasn’t quite grown enough to move onto the next stage of its development in the pouch, and it’s clear to see this. There is no clear distinction to show that this is a kangaroo, which means that it still has a long way to go before it develops its strong legs, it’s tail, and it’s adorable ears.
A penguin in its egg
You’ve probably seen enough movies and documentaries to know that penguins welcome their young through an egg. The female penguin will lay her egg or eggs, and both mommy and daddy penguin will then take it in turns to incubate the egg before the baby penguin is ready to hatch.
Most people know what a freshly hatched penguin looks like, but have you ever seen a penguin still in its egg? Thanks to this incredible photograph, you can see that the fetus is already sporting its feathers while in the egg, and is just waiting for the right moment to crack through its shell and start its life.
A tiny elephant
Elephants are some of the largest creatures in the world, and as you can imagine, it’s not easy to grow such an impressive animal. Because of this, elephants have one of the longest gestation periods of any living creature within the animal kingdom.
Mother elephants will carry their young for around 22 months before they are ready to make an entrance, and during that time, the baby elephant will grow exponentially. Although this tiny elephant looks small and adorable as a fetus, it will soon get even bigger before it breathes its first breath. In fact, the average calf will weigh around 240 pounds!
A growing chihuahua
Puppies come in all shapes and sizes, and there are so many different breeds out there. They all come with their own little quirks, and they also come with their own unique appearances. This puppy in the womb is reportedly a chihuahua, and as already noted, it looks very similar to a wolf fetus!
It’s clear to see that this animal will grow up to be a strong puppy, even though chihuahuas are often noted for being some of the smallest dogs in the animal kingdom. This puppy has already developed a-arms and legs that look fully formed, and it seems as though the only thing left to do is for this little guy to open its eyes.
This horse embryo
As you can see from this photo, this horse embryo is only on day 30 of its journey. Because of this, there’s no telling what kind of animal it could be if you didn’t know the facts. It looks more like a jellyfish than anything else, which makes its eventual development even more impressive.
After all, horses are known for being extremely large creatures that feature long legs, beautiful coats, and long noses. It’s impossible to make anything out from this image, which just goes to show that nature is truly incredible. This little guy has another 11 months to go before it will finally make its way into the world.
The three little bats
There are many misunderstood animals in this world, and it’s fair to say that bats are one of them. Due to their association with vampires and abandoned buildings, many people are afraid of these flapping creatures. However, when you see them in this form, it’s impossible to find them terrifying!
This photograph shows three different gestation stages within a mother bat’s pregnancy. You can see that it’s gearing up to enter the world, and you can see that they are already taking shape in the womb. Although its ears aren’t quite as large as their mother’s, it’s fair to say that its wings are getting ready to take flight.
A cheetah in the uterus
There’s no doubt about the fact that cheetahs are amazing creatures, and it’s fair to say that their gestation period is also pretty incredible. A female cheetah will normally give birth to around three to five cubs after a 90 to 98-day pregnancy, and this is what one of the fetuses would look like in utero.
However, you probably didn’t need us to tell you that, considering there’s no doubt about the fact that this spotty baby is a cheetah. As you can see, the cheetah becomes fully formed during the pregnancy, and will normally be able to stand up and go about its day as soon as it is born. You can even see that this little one has already got some pretty sharp claws!
A lizard embryo
Lizards are extremely unique creatures because different breeds actually give birth in various different ways. While there are those who do give birth to live young, most of them lay eggs that are then incubated. The lizards will then hatch out of their eggs and make their mark on the world. This amazing picture shows a lizard embryo, and it’s easy to see that this animal is growing perfectly.
With its impressive tail and its spindly fingers and toes, it’s clear to see that this lizard is gearing up to take its first breath. Normally, a lizard will lay around 8 to 12 eggs at a time, which will then take around 90 to 100 days to hatch. During that time, the mother has to protect her eggs to make sure they are not eaten by predators.
A chicken fetus
Most people feel as though they know a lot about a chicken and its gestation, considering many eat unfertilized eggs on a regular basis. However, an unfertilized egg is extremely different from a fertilized egg, and you can see that within these two images.
Of course, everyone knows that these chicks are hatched from eggs, but have you ever wondered what the fetus is like inside? This chick looks more like an alien than anything else, and although it hasn’t quite developed its wings just yet, you can still see a few small features that show it will grow into a chicken. A fertilized egg only takes around 21 days to hatch, so this fetus certainly gets moving!
A shark embryo
It’s incredible to see animals in so many different stages of their development, and that’s no different when it comes to sharks. While they are often feared by other animals both in the water and out, there’s no doubt about the fact that they all start off as innocent fetuses that just want to grow as much as they can before swimming around the ocean.
This intriguing shark embryo is tiny, but you can already see that it’s grown so much in such a small amount of time. Not only does it already have its fins, but it’s also developed large eyes and some impressive coloring.
A growing kitten
If you have a cat in your family, there’s a high chance that you are completely and utterly in love with the species. In fact, you may have even dealt with the excitement – and the nerves – of welcoming kittens into the world. Kittens are pretty tiny when they are born, but it’s clear to see that they are just a smaller version of their mother.
This is also the case in the womb, as you can see that this growing kitten is obviously a cat. With its adorable little claws and the tongue that’s sticking out, it seems as though this kitten is already dreaming of the milk that it’s going to drink when it’s finally born. With a gestation period of just 58 – 67 days, this cat fetus probably didn’t have to wait much longer.
An elephant embryo
It’s fair to say that elephants are some of the biggest creatures on this planet, which is why this tiny little elephant embryo might shock you! Spanning just a few centimeters across, it’s been suggested that this elephant is in the very early stages of its development.
It will stay within its mother’s womb for many months before it has grown big and strong enough to be born. However, what’s so incredible about this embryo is that you can’t tell that it’s an elephant. Aside from the small size, it’s also missing its trademark ears and its trunk! Instead, it’s just a tiny fetus with an even tinier tail.
A lion in the uterus
Everyone knows that the lion is the king of the jungle, and it’s safe to say that this little lion fetus looks as though it’s already gearing up to take the animal kingdom by storm. It’s clear to see that this cub is a big cat of some sort, as you can see it’s strong arms and sharp claws, and it’s tell-tale whiskers.
While lions are known for their immense size and their impressive strength, their cubs are relatively small. Over the course of a lionesses 110-day gestation period, she will grow around 2 to 4 little cubs. Each cub will weigh around three pounds when it’s born but will get bigger and bigger as the weeks go by.
A puppy in the womb
There’s a high chance that you have been in the presence of puppies in the past, which is why you might actually recognize the fact that this is a puppy in the womb. While it’s clear to see that it’s not quite as large as a newborn puppy, the features are all there.
This little guy has already developed small but strong legs, an adorable nose, and floppy ears. It’s also amazing to note that this puppy fetus has also developed a fairly thick coat even before it’s born. If you have a dog yourself, it can seem strange that this is what your beloved pet looked like before it made its way into the world.
A growing shark
There have been a few sharks in the womb on this list, but it’s amazing to see just how different all of them look. That’s because there are over 400 different species of shark in this world, and all of them have their own unique characteristics in terms of their appearance.
While it’s not known what kind of shark this embryo is, there’s no doubt about the fact that it’s going to grow up to be a big one! You can already make out the gills on the side of its body, and it seems as though its eye is getting ready to scope out its prey when it finally makes its way into the ocean.
The little piggy
You probably don’t need two guesses to work out what this animal is in the womb. It’s clear to see that this is a pig fetus, and you can tell that by its tell-tale snout and little hooves. The gestation period of a pig changes from species to species, but on average, it takes around 120 days for a mother pig to give birth to her young.
They will become fairly well developed in the womb, before growing even larger when they are finally born. They suckle on the milk of their mother and soon find themselves trotting about their sty and foraging for their own food. The only difference between this little piggy and a piglet is that the fetus hasn’t yet developed ears.
A mouse fetus
The world is an amazing place, and it’s often hard to believe that so many amazing transformations and development happen on a daily basis. This image shows a mouse fetus in the womb, and if you look closely, you can just about see that this is fetus is going to grow up to become its much larger counterpart.
You can just make out its adorable little ears and nose, and even see that its arms and legs are separating from its body and developing into something special. At the moment, we see no hint of its iconic tail, but it still has time to grow the feature it’s known for.
A bat embryo
We’ve already seen what bat looks when they are in their early stages of development, and this incredible photo gives us a closer look at the miracle of a bat birth. While there are certain aspects of this embryo that do make us think of bats, it’s fair to say that this looks more like an alien than anything else!
Although the prominent features of this bat have not yet formed, there are a few hints here and there. You can see that its ears are just starting to grow out of its head and that its arms and wings are jutting their way out of its body. It’s amazing to think that this little thing will soon be flying above the treetops.
A growing elephant
Within this article, we’ve been able to explore some of the many stages of an elephant in utero development, but this is perhaps one of the most impressive. Not only can you really see the environment in which it’s growing, but you can also see the trademark features developing into something special!
With an adorable little tail and a stubby little trunk, there’s no doubt about the fact that this is an elephant. You can even see it’s adorable ears already starting to flap over themselves. With the help of its mother, we have no doubt about the fact that this elephant will grow up to be a beautiful animal.
A puppy embryo
Puppies go through an intense and dramatic transformation over the course of their gestation period, and this image shows a puppy in one of its earliest stages. It’s just an embryo at this point and has yet to develop anything too much of note.
Its eyes are still underdeveloped, it’s arms and legs have only just appeared, and there’s no hint of a tail. However, over the course of just a few months, this puppy will become an incredible animal that will change many people’s lives. It’s not clear to see what breed of puppy this embryo is, but we have no doubt about the fact that it will be super cute when it’s born.
A tiny cat
We’ve already seen how a kitten can look in the early stages of development, but it seems as though this embryo is one of the earliest stages we’ve seen so far. This tiny little thing is still not completely formed and seems to have a long way before we can start seeing whiskers, but there’s no doubt about the fact that it’s a cat.
From the short tail to the webbed hands and feet, this cat is gearing up to be welcomed into the world by its mother. It’s probably also gearing up to be welcomed into a loving home by a family of human beings!
The work of science
Over the years, the human race has been able to use science and technology to our advantage, and this has often worked out in favor of other animals. When this tiny lamb was born prematurely, scientists were able to save its life using the work of science.
The lamb would have passed away if these experts hadn’t created an artificial womb for the animal. It was then able to grow and maintain its development within this artificial womb before it eventually opened its eyes and took its first breath. To do this, scientists pumped nutrients and oxygen into a plastic bag that created this womb-like environment.