Busch Gardens has welcomed the birth of another endangered western lowland gorilla.
The Tampa Florida, 335-acre animal theme park, is celebrating its third successful gorilla birth and the second in the last three months. The female gorilla was born on 6th February, just five weeks before Mother’s Day, and is being cared for by 27-year-old mother Mary.
This birth is part of Busch Gardens’ participation in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ (AZA) Species Survival Plan (SSP). The mission of the SSP is to cooperatively manage specific, and typically threatened or endangered, species populations within AZA-accredited facilities. Busch Gardens’ participation helps create genetically diverse, self-sustaining populations to guarantee the long-term future of these animals.
Jeff Andrews, vice president of zoological operations for Busch Gardens, said: “The first month will be the critical period as the mother, Mary, and the infant begin to integrate into the current gorilla troop, so the Busch Gardens animal care team will be monitoring their progress closely.”
Guests will be able to see the baby gorilla on the Myombe Reserve habitat in the coming days, along with the rest of the gorilla troop. Or, check out the Busch Gardens YouTube channel now for a first look.
**Mandatory Credit: Busch Gardens Tampa**
Where: Tampa, Florida, United States
When: 17 Feb 2015
Credit: **Mandatory Credit: Busch Gardens Tampa**
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