Posted by: Gigi Allianic, Communications
Photos by: Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren, Woodland Park Zoo
|At almost a month old!|
Introductions between first-time mother Nadiri and her new baby are moving along at a slow pace, but a step in the right direction is good news, no matter how tiny those steps may be.
The baby western lowland gorilla, a female, was born November 20 to 19-year-old Nadiri. After giving birth naturally, Nadiri did not pick up her baby. Staff immediately stepped in for the safety and welfare of the baby and to allow the new mom to rest. Because Nadiri does not have experience with motherhood, the zoo prepared for different outcomes while Nadiri was pregnant, including human intervention.
Zoo gorilla and veterinary staff are providing 24/7 care for the baby gorilla behind the scenes in the gorillas’ sleeping quarters in a den next to Nadiri. The mom and the other two members in her group can see the baby, and the baby is immersed in the sights, sounds and smells of gorillas.
According to Nancy Hawkes, the general curator at Woodland Park Zoo, an introduction session over the weekend was the most positive one since the baby was born. “Nadiri gently lifted her baby’s chin with one hand to look at her and leaned forward on her elbows to be at face level. She cupped her head in both of her hands and softly touched her eyes and put her face and mouth against her baby’s face. She also playfully, but very gently, patted her cupped hands against the baby’s head,” explained Hawkes.
|Adorable barometer is officially off the charts.|
At almost a month old, the baby gorilla is bottle fed human infant formula on demand and currently weighs just over 6 pounds. “She’s showing normal weight gain and her two lower front teeth have come in, so she is in the teething phase,” said Hawkes.
The zoo will continue to provide hands-on care for the baby
gorilla for the next three months while introducing Nadiri to her baby as long
as the introduction sessions remain positive. Thank you for sending positive
vibes to this little one, she has certainly captured the hearts of her keepers
and animal health staff.
|Two little teeth are showing!|
The baby gorilla will be named at the beginning of the new year and we will share details about the naming right here.