Kamili and Gugas, a western lowland gorilla couple who make their home at Belfast Zoo, had a baby girl in March of 2014. Zoo staff named the baby "Kibibi," which means "little lady" in Swahili. Belfast Zoo curator Julie Mansell explained why Kibibi is such a wonderful surprise to the zoo staff:
“Kibibi is the second arrival within the last year for dad, Gugas, and she is the first girl! In 2012, with no sign of pregnancies, we tested Gugas’ fertility and the results were not promising. In fact, we feared that Gugas would never father any young. We are delighted that he has proven us all wrong with the arrival of Kibibi and Baako in the last year.
All apes are endangered or critically endangered and some professionals have even predicted that all species of ape will be extinct within 30 years. Gorilla populations have declined by more than 50% in recent decades and our role, as a zoo, in their conservation is becoming more and more vital.”
Image credits: Belfast Zoo