VIDEO: Audubon Zoo welcomes critically endangered baby gorilla

VIDEO: Audubon Zoo welcomes critically endangered baby gorilla
A critically endangered western lowland gorilla was born in the morning hours of September 4, 2020. This is the first gorilla birth at Audubon Zoo in 24 years and the first offspring for 13-year-old Tumani. (Source: Audubon Nature Institute)

NEW ORLEANS, La. (WVUE) -The Audubon Zoo is celebrating the birth of a critically endangered western lowland gorilla.

The yet to be named newborn was born Sept. 4. This is the first gorilla birth at Audubon Zoo in 24 years and the first offspring for 13-year-old Tumani.

A critically endangered western lowland gorilla was born in the morning hours of September 4, 2020. This is the first gorilla birth at Audubon Zoo in 24 years and the first offspring for 13-year-old Tumani.
A critically endangered western lowland gorilla was born in the morning hours of September 4, 2020. This is the first gorilla birth at Audubon Zoo in 24 years and the first offspring for 13-year-old Tumani. (Source: Audubon Nature Institute)

Mother and baby are doing well. Animal care staff are closely monitoring the infant’s health to ensure that mother and baby are receiving the care needed.

An Audubon spokesperson says mom and baby are bonding well. Animal caretakers have not been in the habitat yet to determine if the new addition is male or female.

“This is a momentous occasion for Audubon Zoo,” said Audubon Nature Institute President and CEO Ron Forman. “We are thrilled to share this birth with our New Orleans community and contribute to the conservation efforts of this critically endangered species.”

This birth is the result of successful breeding between 13-year-old Tumani and Okpara, a 27-year-old silverback gorilla, who came to Audubon from Franklin Park Zoo in 2017.

This is Tumani and Okpara’s first offspring.

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