En Caul Waterbirth: 12 Beautiful Babies Born in Amniotic Sac
All births are magical in their own way, of course, but en caul births are particularly enchanting—and said to be a sign of good luck, too. There is a beauty in birth that cannot be defined by words.
An en caul birth, also known as a “mermaid birth” or “veiled birth”, is when the baby comes out still inside or partially wrapped in the amniotic sac. This happens in only 1 in 80,000 births, making it extremely rare.1 It might look like your newborn is completely gift-wrapped in a soft bubble.
The amniotic sac is made up of two layers of membranes and filled with amniotic fluid which the baby has been floating inside of during the entire pregnancy. Usually when you’re about to go into labor your amniotic sac ruptures – your water breaks. If the water doesn’t break, the baby is born en caul, usually inside the inner layer of membrane or just partially covered.
During birth and right after, baby stays safe, having everything they need inside the amniotic sac, which is then carefully removed by the midwife or doctor. Sometimes a squirming baby, may even break open the amniotic sac on their own. If the sac is already ruptured or only partially covering baby it is easily removed, though more care should be taken if baby is born with the outer membrane still intact.
Probably the coolest birth photo! Photo credits: Tia Biggs
The amazing bag of waters! Photo credits: Monet Nicole
"I was in awe to see this first-time mom rock the hands-off homebirth of her first child." Photo credits: VI-Photography
The amniotic sac. A sight to behold. Photo credits: Santa Cruz Birth Photography
The night Grace was born will be forever treasured in my heart. Birth is powerful, intense and magical...and birthing our last baby, still in her amniotic sac was incredible and miraculous. Photo credits: Love Made Visible
Mom (a midwife herself!) is delivering her baby into her own hands. The shiny thing on baby's head is part of the caul, also known as the amniotic sac. Photo credits: Katia G Photo
She came into the world, with waters still intact - AKA a ‘mermaid birth’ occurring in fewer than 1 in 80,000 births! Photo credits: Children’s Mindfulness Coach
Childbirth is more admirable than conquest, more amazing than self-defense, and as courageous as either one. Photo credits: Carbon+West Birth Services
What an incredible flashback! The 11th babe born to this family, arriving at home and en caul, a VBAC following an emergency cesarean. Photo credits: Improving Birth
En caul. A unique and breathtaking occurrence. You can see the baby's sac billowing around her face. Photo credits: Monet Nicole
En caul birth! How to lose 11lb in just 4 hours! Photo credits: Brit Pavey
This babe was born *en caul* with a *true knot.* The odds of these rare occurrences **both** happening have to be immense. Just like the work this mom did to bring her sweet boy into her arms. Photo credits: Monet Nicole