The birth of a critically endangered orangutan baby has been hailed as a “special moment” by Chester Zoo.
The youngster, a Sumatran orangutan whose sex is not yet known, arrived to mother Emma and father Puluh on Saturday June 19.
Claire Parry, one of the zoo’s specialist primate keepers, said: “Sumatran orangutans are one of the world’s most threatened large mammals and so the safe arrival of a new baby is an incredibly special moment.
“Emma is an experienced mum and already she’s formed a really close bond with the little one, it’s wonderful to see her cradling it so gently.”
The Sumatran orangutan is one of the world’s most endangered great apes, threatened by hunting, illegal logging, and habitat loss as rainforests are cleared to make way for palm oil plantations.
The city of Chester became the world’s first sustainable palm oil city after zoo conservationists reformed the supply chains of businesses in the area to only include palm oil from sustainable, deforestation-free suppliers.
The overhaul included local restaurants, cafes, hotels, fast food outlets, schools and workplaces.
Ms Parry added: “We hope the baby will help us to raise more awareness about the destruction of rainforests in South East Asia that is driving this magnificent species, and many others, towards extinction.”