An infant ape who journeyed from Texas to be fostered by one of the nation’s best surrogate mothers is now beginning to explore his outdoor habitat. Remy, a 4-month-old male Sumatran Orangutan from the Fort Worth Zoo, is adjusting well and has been accepted by Madu, a 27-year-old Sumatran Orangutan at Zoo Atlanta. The infant, whose full name is Rembulan Wajah (Rembulan means “moon;” Wajah, “face,” in Indonesian) was born on November 26, 2010. His biological mother became very ill and was unable to care for Remy. Although she has since improved, she remains under close veterinary supervision. The Orangutan Species Survival Plan (SSP) identified Madu as the top candidate for surrogacy, as she has successfully reared two previous foster infants.
100 days is a long time to wait for a proper name, but today Zoo Atlanta's little Panda cub got a name: "Po!" It's no coincidence that the cub's name might sound familiar to fans of Kung Fu Panda. DreamWorks sponsored the naming of the little cub in exchange for funding Zoo Atlanta's panda conservation efforts. Additionally, DreamWorks will continue to fund efforts at China's Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, a facility we have covered in the past. The cub is now 11lbs and took his first steps a few days ago. See the cubs progress as covered by ZooBorns at birth and four weeks.
Giant Panda mom, Lun-Lun, gave birth to a tiny pink cub on November 3rd at Zoo Atlanta. At that time, the cub was hairless and helpless, like all panda cubs at that age. One month later, the cub is hairy but still helpless as we see in this special behind-the-scenes veterinary check-up video below. Heather Baker Roberts, Carnivore Keeper II, gave a detailed update yesterday on the Zoo's panda blog. "The cub is becoming more active each day. When Lun Lun leaves him alone, he wiggles and exercises his muscles. He works one back leg as if to scratch himself or he manages to turn himself around on the floor.
(continued from above "Most importantly, he can right himself when he ends up on his back. Just last week, if he accidentally rolled onto his back while Lun Lun was away, he was very unhappy – flailing his legs in the air and squawking loudly until Lun Lun rushed back and picked him up. He was like a stranded tortoise! But now he has developed enough muscle strength to roll himself over onto his stomach fairly quickly when he is supine. I am actually surprised he can roll over at all since his belly is so fat, but I have seen him do it several times in recent days. This is a big step for the little guy!"
Lun Lun, a 13-year-old female Giant Panda at Zoo Atlanta, gave birth to her third cub on November 3, 2010. The cub, born at 5:39 a.m. in a specially-prepared birthing den in the Zoo’s giant panda building, is the only giant panda to be born in the U.S. in 2010. Lun Lun appears to be providing appropriate care for her cub, which is roughly the size of a cell phone. The Animal Management and Veterinary Teams will continue round-the-clock monitoring of mother and cub, and a preliminary veterinary checkup will be performed as soon as staff is able to remove the cub without disrupting maternal care.
You can also view Lun Lun and her baby on the Zoo's pandacam.
The great ape whose name has become synonymous with motherhood has a new outlet for her considerable parenting skills. Kuchi, a 25-year-old western lowland gorilla, gave birth to an infant overnight Saturday at Zoo Atlanta. The newborn is the third offspring for Kuchi and 20-year-old silverback Taz, who is also the father of fraternal twins Kali and Kazi, 4.
We want your vote (via comment, facebook, email, or twitter) for best hair do. America's newest Golden Lion Tamarins are facing off in a ZooBorns showdown for coolest coiffe. ('Elvis', on the left, is from Zoo Atlanta and 'Orolito', right, is from Cleveland Metroparks Zoo). Send the name of your pick via any of the channels above and we'll tally the results. Click the images below to enlarge.
Extra points may be awarded for clinging technique...
Tomorrow will be a bittersweet day at the National Zoo and Zoo Atlanta, as fans must say goodbye to Giant Pandas Tai Shan and Mei Lan respectively. Four year old Giant Pandas Tai Shan and Mei Lan have captivated crowds since their successful births, the first for both institutions.
The pandas will be returned to China in accordance with the Zoos' original agreements. In fact, Tai Shan was supposed to return home two years ago but the Chinese government extended his stay for another two years.
(Below) Tai Shan back in 2005 at 11-weeks-old. This was during the cub's 7th check up, all of which he "handled very well," according to zoo veteranarians.
Photo: Smithsonian Zoo
(Below) Snow falls on Tai Shan during his farewell celebration. The snow and frigid temperatures failed to deter Tan Shan's diehard fans from coming to say goodbye.
Photo: Jon McRay/FONZ Photo Club
(Below) Mei Lan snuggles up with mom during her first weeks at Zoo Atlanta in 2006.
(Below) Mei Lan strikes a postcard worthy panda-pose.
(Below) The Washington Post shares video of Tai-Shan's last days in DC.
Tai-Shan received farewell letters from DC area students including this one from Florence Kane, age 8.
Lun Lun, a proud Mommy, cuddles her infant, and look how far he's come!
No more camera... me go sleepy time, okay?!