Taronga Zoo’s renowned chimpanzee group continues to grow, with experienced mother, Lisa, giving birth to a healthy male baby this week.
Keepers spotted the new baby in the chimps’ night dens on Monday morning, cradled in its mother’s arms. The birth comes just six weeks after the arrival of young male, Sudi, who was born to mother Shiba on 9 August.
Unlike Shiba, Lisa hasn’t been shy in showing off her tiny new addition, allowing keepers to confirm the baby’s sex in a matter of hours.
“Lisa is a very relaxed mother and has shown her great experience since the birth, confidently carrying her youngster out into the Chimpanzee Sanctuary to the delight of visitors,” said primate supervisor, Lou Grossfeldt.
“The baby is suckling well, appears very healthy and is quite vocal when he’s not sleeping in his mother’s arms.”
The infant already has a brother, Taronga’s alpha male Lubutu, and a sister, Lani, in the group. Keepers will soon choose a name that reflects the baby’s nature and African heritage.
The birth provided an exciting start to the school holidays at Taronga. Visitors may catch glimpses of the baby, hanging on tight to his mother’s belly, as Lisa has been in the Sanctuary’s exhibit areas since the birth.
The birth also represents another success for Taronga’s chimpanzee conservation efforts, which increasingly operate in the wild, as well as at the Zoo. Taronga has an ongoing partnership with the Jane Goodall Foundation’s Tchimpounga Rehabilitation Centre in the Congo, which helps chimpanzees rescued from poachers and the illegal pet trade.