RIP: Jackson Zoo announces the death of baby orangutan - - Jackson, MS

RIP: Jackson Zoo announces the death of baby orangutan

JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) - The Jackson Zoo today announced the loss of its' 6 month old orangutan on Thursday, Oct. 23.

Thursday morning, Zoo staff found the baby orangutan lifeless in the overnight keeping quarters with his mom, Sabah.

The death was unexpected, as no signs of stress or harm to the infant were present before his passing.

Multiple issues were found during the initial necropsy report and we await the final reports to pinpoint the cause of death.

The mother of the infant appears to be doing well and remains under close watch and care by the staff.

Sabah came to the Jackson Zoo in April 2013 from the Pittsburgh Zoo.

She formed a close relationship with our male orangutan, Pumpkin, during their first face-to-face meeting.

The infant was born on April 24, 2014 and was named Kayu by his keeper.

This was the pair's first offspring together, and the first baby orangutan to be born at the Jackson Zoo.

The Jackson Zoo is very saddened by the loss of Kayu.

Sabah has been successful in breeding previously, and showed very good signs of maternity with the infant.

Baby orangutans are carried by the mother for the first year, and then the baby will begin to travel on its own. Sabah was very attached and tentative to Kayu, as was all of the staff that interacted with him.

“The loss of any animal in our collection is a sad occasion, but even more so when they are so young,” said Animal Care Supervisor Willie Bennett, “we were all so excited and hopeful of this special birth.”

The baby orangutan's full name was Kayu Dari Hutan, which translates Wood of the Forest.

This name is special to the Bornean orangutan species, because of the deforestation and endangerment of orangutans in their natural environment.

Bornean Orangutans are classified as endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List, with less than 55,000 in the wild.

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