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Critically Endangered Orangutan Born at Blackpool Zoo

Blackpool Zoo has welcomed its first critically endangered Bornean orangutan baby for more than two decades after first time mother Jingga gave birth in the early hours of Wednesday 14th June.

Visitors will be able to see the infant, which keepers have confirmed as male, when the orangutan house is reopened on Saturday 1st July following a short period of closure to allow mother and son to bond.

Jingga, who is 13, came to Blackpool in 2017 from her birthplace in Barcelona and the baby’s father, Kawan, joined her, along with Blackpool born Cherie and Summer, in 2022.


Kawan, who is also 13, arrived from Apenheul Zoo in the Netherlands and was an instant hit with the females.

The newest addition to the group is very special indeed as the species is in real danger of becoming extinct in the wild and Blackpool’s group of orangutans are part of the European Endangered Species Programme (EEP).


Darren Webster, Director at Blackpool Zoo, said: “The arrival of this very special baby is wonderful news, not just for us here at Blackpool Zoo, but for the species too. 

“One of our resident females, Summer, was the last baby to be born here and we have been working hard to create a breeding group to help safeguard the future of this magnificent species.


“Kawan’s arrival marked the beginning of a new start after our previous male, Ramon moved to a group in Germany that was more suited to him for breeding.

“Ramon settled in well in his new family and has now become a father himself, so we are delighted that the move was a huge success for both collections.


“Kawan was selected to form a breeding group at Blackpool Zoo following extensive talks with experts from the European Endangered Species Programme (EEP) and specialist keepers from the UK and beyond.

“The Bornean orangutan was classified as critically endangered in July 2016 by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).  This means that this species now faces an “extremely high” risk of extinction in the wild.

“This makes breeding programmes such as the EEP absolutely vital and we are hoping that this is the start of a new generation of beautiful Bornean orangutans here at Blackpool Zoo.”

The group of five live in Blackpool Zoo’s £1million Orangutan Outlook facility, which has been specially designed to meet the complicated needs of the magnificent species.

Meet Blackpool Zoo’s Bornean orangutan family:


Date of birth: February 22nd 2010

Birthplace: Apeldoorn in the Netherlands

Physical characteristics:  He has a long face and slim build (although this will change in time as he continues to mature)

Personality:  He is very calm and laid back, he loves food enrichment including the yogurt dipper and blue tubes containing frozen food.

Other information: He is the youngest adult in the group and now a first-time father!


Date of birth: October 20th 2009

Birthplace: Barcelona

Physical characteristics: She is the smallest female in the group

Personality:  She has a gentle nature and is very inquisitive; she likes to be involved and watch what is going on around her

Other information: Appeared in a viral video in 2015 which has been viewed more than 20 million times

New baby

Date of birth: June 14th 2023

Birthplace: Blackpool

Physical characteristics: Tiny and very, very cute

Personality: Yet to be discovered!

Other information: The baby is the first Bornean orangutan to be born at Blackpool for more than two decades


Date of birth: April 9th 1997

Birthplace: Blackpool

Physical characteristics:  Her hair is a more auburn, deep tone of red

Personality:  She is playful but can be strong-willed and stubborn!

Other information: Cherie was born in the outside paddock at Blackpool Zoo at 1.45pm. As the zoo was open to visitors at this time her birth was witnessed by crowds of people


Date of birth: May 23rd 2002

Birthplace: Blackpool

Physical characteristics: Her hair is more orange than auburn and she has a round-shaped face.

Personality: Playful and inquisitive

Other information:  Summer was with Jingga during the birth of the baby, which will give her vital experience if she becomes a mother herself in future


Pictures / Videos show:

More information about Blackpool Zoo:

Blackpool Zoo is owned by Parques Reunidos, the second largest European leisure parks operator and a leading world-wide player. The zoo is home to over 1,000 mammals, birds, reptiles and invertebrates set amidst thirty-seven acres of mature woodland and lakes.  

The zoo's signature animals include elephants, giraffes, big cats, gorillas, orang-utans, sea lions, primates, zebras and kangaroos. It is open every day of the year, apart from Christmas Day, from 10am. For more information visit  

Blackpool Zoo is a member of The British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums (BIAZA), which is a conservation, education and wildlife charity, representing over 100 of the best zoos and aquariums in Britain and Ireland. 

BIAZA collections have global impact, participating in over 800 conservation projects, 1,400 research projects and contributing more than £24 million a year to field conservation. With over 30 million visitors being welcomed annually, BIAZA zoos and aquariums are recognised as offering a fun and safe way to learn about animals and together they deliver formal education sessions to more than 1 million students.

For further information please contact:

Paula Holden at ICG on 01772 679383 or on 07772268378 or email [email protected]