The number of babies born in Northern Ireland has reached a 17-year high.

According to figures released by the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency, a total of 25,600 births were registered last year, the highest number since 1991

The latest rise is the sixth consecutive annual increase.

Births have increased by 10% since 2006 and by 20% since the 2002 low.

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The increase has been attributed to more women delaying having babies until they are in their 30s.

The birth rate for women in that age group has increased by nearly 25% over the last decade.

Increased migration to Northern Ireland also had an impact on the number of children born last year, with 2,300 babies born to mothers who themselves were born outside the UK and the Republic.