Baby Orangutan Bonds With Surrogate Mom

Kecil, who's 10  months old, has been bonding well with his adopted mom Maggie.
Chicago Zoological Society
Kecil, who's 10  months old, has been bonding well with his adopted mom Maggie.

After four months at the Brookfield Zoo, keepers say 10-month-old Kecil is bonding well with his surrogate mom, 53-year-old Maggie. In an update on the pair’s progress in time for Orangutan Awareness Week, keepers say Maggie helps Kecil find the staff when it’s time for a bottle, lets him sample her food and plays with him. The 13.5-pound baby also sleeps with Maggie at night. "By day 11 Maggie would not let us take him away anymore to get weighed. She said, 'No, he's my baby and I'm not letting you take him,'" said keeper Nava Greenblatt. Kecil was born in January at the Toledo Zoo in Ohio, and his mother showed little interest in him. At 4 months old, he was transferred to the Milwaukee County Zoo, but officials didn’t feel he bonded well enough with a surrogate there. He seems to have found a great fit with Maggie, though. "There is definitely a connection and a bonding going on here," said Craig Demitros, associate curator of primates at the Brookfield Zoo. "It could be motherly love." — Watch it at ABC 7 Chicago


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