Riverbanks Zoo Ready to Welcome First Baby Gorilla

February 13, 2018, 11:52 am EST | Share:

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A South Carolina zoo says a new baby gorilla is on its way.

Riverbanks Zoo says a 12-year-old gorilla named Kazi has been pregnant for about four or five months. Her baby is due likely sometime in June.

Veterinarians say the gorilla is in good health and there are no complications so far, but first-time gorilla mothers are more likely to suffer complications.

“Kazi is in good health, and her pregnancy is progressing normally,” said John Davis, curator of mammals at Riverbanks Zoo and Garden. “First-time gorilla mothers are, however, more likely to experience challenges related to birth and child-rearing, so we are cautiously optimistic moving forward.”

The zoo in Columbia expected to welcome its first gorilla baby last spring, but the animal died while being delivered.

The zoo said in a statement that the mother and father are western lowland gorillas which are considered critically endangered species with just 100,000 left in the wild.