CHICAGO -- The Lincoln Park Zoo showed off the newest member of its gorilla family to the media on Friday. The public will be allowed to see the baby starting Saturday at noon.
The as yet unnamed female was born Tuesday.
The first 72 hours of life are critical and zoologists estimate more than 40 percent of gorilla babies in the wild don’t survive past their first year.
Zoo staff say there are very few females in captivity, so her birth is a victory in the effort to save the Western Lowland Gorilla, which is extremely endangered.
Curators are keeping a 24 hour watch on the baby and mother Bahadi, who has been cradling, feeding and protecting her offspring.
The father, a Silverback called Kwan has also been watching over mom and baby, while keeping two younger males in the family from becoming too curious.
Lincoln Park Zoo has 11 gorillas, making it one of the world’s leaders in gorilla breeding and conservation.