In one of her last official engagements, Ireland's President Mary McAleese opened Dublin Zoo's new Gorilla Rainforest during a ceremony.
In a double celebration, Dublin Zoo also announced the birth of another healthy baby Gorilla born to first-time mum, Mayani, on Friday 16th September. The baby arrived just days after the Gorillas moved to their new habitat. The animal care team is delighted to confirm the baby Gorilla is female. Proud mum Mayani is cradling the infant close to her chest and both mother and baby are thriving.
The largest of the primates, western lowland gorillas favour quiet, tranquil environments and the design of this incredible new habitat was strongly influenced by behavioural studies of gorillas in the wild. High, rocky outcrops and trees allow the apes an overview of the surrounding landscape, while streams and dense vegetation allow the gorillas to forage and move to private resting spaces.
Dublin Zoo has maintained western lowland gorillas for many years and is home to a breeding group of seven healthy gorillas, the most recent additions being Kituba, a baby boy who was born earlier this year and Mayani’s newborn. It is envisaged that the troop will grow in size to between 12 – 15 gorillas over the coming years.