‘Monumental success’: Critically endangered Sumatran orangutan born at zoo

Published: May. 10, 2023 at 4:01 PM CDT
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SACRAMENTO (Gray News) – A California zoo welcomed a critically endangered Sumatran orangutan baby last week.

The Sacramento Zoo said it’s the first orangutan birth at the zoo since 1981.

Zoo officials said the healthy male baby was born on May 1 to 19-year-old first-time mother Indah.

Indah’s behavior following the birth was “appropriate” according to the zoo, but she was having difficulty nursing so zookeepers stepped in to help care for the infant.

“The baby is currently receiving around the clock care by animal care and veterinary staff while the team is continuously reevaluating plans to reunite the infant with Indah,” the zoo said in a statement. “The timeframe for reintroduction is unknown at this time, but that remains the ultimate goal.”

The baby is not yet named, and zoo officials said it remains behind the scenes with Indah and is not available for public view yet.

“With only 79 Sumatran orangutans in human care in the United States, and populations of wild orangutans rapidly declining, every birth is a monumental success for the species,” the zoo said.