Baby Gorilla Born at ABQ BioPark Zoo, Boosting Endangered Species Conservation

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Excitement filled the ABQ BioPark Zoo as Nia Lewa, a 21-year-old western lowland gorilla, welcomed her first offspring late Saturday night.

The baby gorilla, born into the critically endangered species, joins the troop alongside elder sibling Mashika, born in 2022 to Samantha.

According to Lynn Tupa and yahoo, ABQ BioPark Zoo manager, Nia Lewa has shown exceptional maternal instincts, with Mashika displaying curiosity towards the new arrival while receiving gentle nudges for respectful distance.

Kojo, the father gorilla, has also been vigilant, ensuring the family unit remains calm and harmonious.

The gender of the newborn is yet to be determined and will be revealed by zoo staff in the coming weeks. Currently, the focus remains on the baby’s health, with reports indicating it is alert and nursing well under Nia Lewa’s attentive care.

Zoo visitors are advised of intermittent closures along the Ape Walk to provide privacy for bonding moments between mother and baby.

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Staff at ABQ BioPark spent months preparing Nia Lewa for motherhood, including training sessions with a plush gorilla toy to simulate nurturing behaviors.

The successful birth represents a significant milestone in the conservation efforts of western lowland gorillas, contributing to the Species Survival Plan recommended by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.

As Tupa noted, each birth is crucial for the long-term preservation of endangered species, showcasing the expertise and dedication of accredited zoological facilities in safeguarding wildlife populations.









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