For the past few weeks staff, and visitors at the Calgary Zoo have been awaiting the day Kioja, one of the female Gorillas would give birth to her first baby. The little bundle finally arrived last week, on Friday, 11-Mar-2016.
To give mum and baby, and the rest of the troop time to adjust to this new arrival the building has since been closed to the general public. Despite knowing that we would not be able to see the new baby gorilla my husband and I visited the zoo today, as we often do on one of my Fridays off. In the early afternoon we passed by the building that houses the gorillas only to find out that they were allowing people in to visit. This was done under strict control and the security guard ensured that only 20 people at a time entered the building every 5 to 10 minutes. To further help not to unsettle the new mum the zoo had roped off the area immediately in front of the glass viewing area.
We were lucky enough to be allowed in after a short wait and despite the glare off the glass I managed to get some pictures of the new arrival. At this stage the sex of the little one is not yet known. Mum was relaxing while feeding her baby, with the dad not far away and another female close by.
This little one is truly cute.
And yes, I would love to see these animals being free and doing what they should be doing, but as I have previously said, mankind has made this almost impossible and these animals (as many others in zoos) are critically endangered with more than 80% of the population having been lost in the last three generations. If zoos did not exist, most of these animals would be extinct by now and our children would only know them from photos, books, the internet and our stories. No wild animal should be caged, but until humans stop senselessly killing wildlife and robbing them of their much needed habitat it is hard to see that this will ever change.