‘Tiny’ gorilla baby takes big first step
Tuesday 15 February 2011
He’s been nicknamed ‘Tiny’ by zookeepers, but ZSL London Zoo’s male gorilla baby is now taking his first big steps.
Thrilled zookeepers captured on camera the moment the three-month-old youngster left his mother’s side for the first time to explore his Gorilla Kingdom home.
Tiny, who has clung to his mother, 12-year-old Mjukuu, since birth, was urged on by her as he stumbled and crawled around the gorilla enclosure - much to the delight of his keepers.
Under the watchful eyes of ‘Aunty’ gorillas Zaire, 36, and Effie, 17, the baby made his way back to his mum, only to be gently pushed away and encouraged to continue his new adventure.
Gorilla keeper, Daniel Simmonds says: “All of Tiny’s keepers were there to see and to photograph his first steps – it was a very special moment for all of us here in Gorilla Kingdom.
“Tiny is also getting his first teeth through at the moment; however he still has a long way to go before he becomes a twenty-five stone silverback gorilla.”
Keepers are to decide on a permanent name for the youngster, who is just over one foot tall, as he quickly outgrows his ‘Tiny’ nickname.
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