Primate zoo keepers at Chessington World of Adventures have announced the arrival of a Western Lowland Gorilla cub.
Currently unnamed, the adorable newcomer was born in the early hours of Sunday, April 24, and is closely monitored by the team.
The baby stands next to the mother and is slowly introduced to the rest of the troop.
Born to mother, Shanga, and father, Damisi, the little ape will join the current troop of eight western lowland gorillas at Chessington Zoo.
In photos taken three days after birth, the baby can be seen clinging to the mother while observing the new environment.
As is typical within the species, in the next few weeks the baby will have passed around between several members of the troop. In this way, each gorilla can become familiar with the new baby.
Following this introduction, they will ride on their mother’s back from the age of four months to the first two or three years of their life.
Adam Douglass, Primate Zookeeper of the Chessington World of Adventures Resort, said of the arrival: “It is extremely exciting for the entire zoo team as we welcome our new arrival in Chessington.
“As these are the first few days and a sensitive time for bonding between mother and baby, we are monitoring their well-being and development extremely closely, with both currently doing well.
“We are still waiting to find out the sex of the baby and in the next few days we can’t wait to introduce our guests to the latest arrival of this incredible and critically endangered species.”
The western lowland gorilla is found in several Central African countries, with the subspecies currently listed as “critically endangered” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
Threats to its population in the wild include habitat loss due to modification and agriculture, and illegal hunting by humans for bushmeat.
In 2011, Chessington World of Adventures launched the Chessington Conservation Fund (CCF) to raise money to help protect the future of nature and wildlife through conservation work and education in their zoo, local community, and around. the world.
Since its formation, the Fund has supported many charitable organizations, including the Limbe Wildlife Center which rehabilitates rescued western lowland gorillas in Cameroon.
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