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Baby Gorilla Born at San Diego Zoo

(Image: © Ken Bohn, San Diego Zoo)

Kokamo, a 22-year old western gorilla, holds her 4-day old baby at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park on Monday. The baby, born at 9 p.m. on June 17, 2011, is the first gorilla born at the Safari Park since October 2000.

Both mother and baby are doing fine and keepers report that the mother is taking excellent care of the baby, which is nursing often. Keepers have not been able to weigh the baby yet, and the sex hasn't been determined.

The San Diego Zoo Safari Park now has 6 western gorillas, a species listed as critically endangered by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature.

A newborn gorilla grows quickly and can be expected to learn to walk on its own by six months; by 18 months of age, it can follow Mom on foot for short distances. Gorillas have been known to nurse for up to three years.