Baby gorilla makes debut at Cincinnati Zoo

Baby gorilla makes debut at Cincinnati Zoo

CINCINNATI (FOX19) - Visitors to Gorilla World got a big surprise Tuesday morning when the one-week-old gorilla baby came out with mom Anju.

The 14-year-old western lowland gorilla gave birth last week at the Cincinnati Zoo.

This is Anju's first baby and the 50th gorilla born at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden since 1970.

Keepers have not yet decided on a name.

Anju and the baby will head outside around 10 a.m. while the temperatures are warm, a zoo rep said. Appearances also depend on health and disposition of the group.

"The baby's father, silverback Jomo, started showing a lot of interest in Anju shortly before she gave birth.  He kept other gorillas, including the very curious, two-year-old Gladys, away from her during labor and delivery," said Primate Team Leader Eric High, who was there to witness the birth.

Now that the baby has arrived, the keepers maintain the watch and will continue until a time that Anju is consistently providing proper care and nursing opportunities, according to the zoo.

The imaging team at The Christ Hospital played a crucial role in Anju's pregnancy. Keepers and the imaging team performed regular ultrasounds to monitor growth, fetal movement, fluid, and heart rate.  The Zoo is using this information to build its Fetal Great Ape Ultrasound Monitoring Program, a database that will eventually provide the Gorilla Species Survival Program (SSP) with information useful for making breeding recommendations.

The new mom has been trained to voluntarily receive medical treatments, including sonograms, which allowed her to sit comfortably during the scans, zoo reps said.

Anju was born at the Pittsburgh Zoo and came to the Cincinnati Zoo in 2012.

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