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Hope has a name: Kitoko

Posted by Gigi Allianic, Communications

Today in honor of Endangered Species Day, we are excited to announce the name of Uzumma's baby boy: Kitoko (ki-TOE-koh), which means beautiful or handsome in the African languages, Lingala /Kikongo.

The opportunity to name the baby gorilla was given to Woodland Park Zoo Board member Rosemarie Havranek and her family, Nathan, Cameron, and Conor Myhrvold, as a small token of gratitude for their long-time, generous support of Woodland Park Zoo’s mission to save wildlife and inspire everyone to make conservation a priority in their lives.

“Our family has supported the zoo for many decades and the opportunity to name the newest baby gorilla is an honor. We have spent many hours at the zoo as a family, observing the wildlife and teaching our sons about the important work of animal conservation,” says Rosemarie Havranek. “Woodland Park Zoo's mission of animal conservation locally and globally reminds us that we need to take care of the world around us or it will not be here for future generations. May the birth of baby Kitoko, at this time of extreme upheaval, remind us that life will go on and we as humans need to do all we can to make the world safe for all living creatures.”

The 2-month-old western lowland gorilla was born to first-time mom Uzumma and dad Kwame on March 4. Read the latest update from gorilla keepers on mom and baby and the rest of the group! You can also follow along on to catch up on all of Kitoko's milestones.

Here are three ways to celebrate Kitoko on Endangered Species Day...

Color a wish card for Kitoko's wish book and be entered to win some fabulous prizes: Show your love for Uzumma's baby by sending him a wish. Each milestone in the baby’s life is a symbol of hope for his cousins in the wild, for the forests they live in and for our planet. What are your wishes for the baby gorilla? What do you hope for the future of endangered gorillas? Once we collect all of your wishes for the baby, we’ll put them into a wish book for our dedicated team of gorilla keepers. Visit to get started! p.s. The contest ends June 12!

Symbolically adopt a baby gorilla: Adopt now and help fund conservation programs and the daily care and feeding of our gorilla baby, mom Uzumma and all zoo inhabitants.

Do more for gorillas: Learn more about endangered gorillas and how you can join us in saving species and protecting habitats. Visit to get the scoop on our gorilla conservation partners.
The United States Congress started Endangered Species Day in 2006 to celebrate the nation’s wildlife and wild places. Its simple goal is to educate people about the importance of protecting the nation’s rare, threatened, and endangered animal and plant species.

Thanks to the Endangered Species Act and the hard work of conservationists and activists, the bald eagle, green sea turtle, American alligator, peregrine falcon and many other species were pulled back from the edge of extinction. Woodland Park Zoo has given western pond turtles a head start in Washington state and helped protect thousands of acres of pristine cloud forests for tree kangaroos in Papua New Guinea.

We have heart for a healthier planet and a more sustainable world on Endangered Species Day and we hope you and your family find ways to celebrate the incredible species that share our planet.


LoveApes said…
Kitoko really is uncommonly handsome. He has beautiful eyes and a perfect nose.
Anonymous said…
I love the name. My adopted boy has a K name, and I'm thrilled. He is growing more handsome. I can't wait to see him in person.