The unidentified infant was found by a member of the public yesterday in Richmond, North Yorkshire, in a communal area of a small housing estate on the outskirts of the historic market town.
Police have conducted a finger-tip search through rubbish in an effort to find evidence to help them trace the mother who may urgently need medical care, as well as support for the trauma she will have been through.
The baby has been taken to the mortuary of Darlington Memorial Hospital.
Ann Holt, head of midwifery at the hospital, said: “Our message is for mum to come forward for the serious medical complications that might occur following this kind of delivery, like bleeding and infection, but also from the point of view that we have a baby here without her mum.
“We would like to reunite the mum with her baby in our hospital.”
She urged anyone in the mother’s family to think about the health risks that she might face if she did not receive medical care.
And the senior midwife added: “The mother may be feeling that she is on her own and things are really bad, but the midwives have dealt with this sort of situation before, aren’t going to be judgmental and are really concerned about her health, both physical and mental.
“We don’t know the circumstances around this individual mother but in my experience it tends to be younger mothers, but we don’t know that for definite.
“Sometimes it is not that the person is bad, it’s that they are very frightened and afraid and don’t know where to go for help and it’s in a panic that these things happen.
“Then they have to live with it, so we are urging her to come forward so she can come to terms with the traumatic experience that she has been through.”
There was a strong presence from North Yorkshire Police at Whitcliffe Grange, a cul-de-sac off the main road west out of Richmond, where the grim discovery was made.
Officers in overalls, masks and wearing plastic gloves had the unpleasant task of sifting through refuse, including nappies, for any clues.
Paramedics had been called to the housing development’s communal waste area, but they were unable to revive the girl who was pronounced dead at the scene.
Inspector Mark Gee had previously urged the mother to come forward and said her health and well being was the priority.
Mr Gee was unable to say yet whether the baby was full-term when she was delivered and said he was keeping an “open mind” about the age of the mother.