23 October 2015

Felicity Oram, programme advisor and PhD student with the orangutan research unit of our project partners – Hutan, sent us the below message following the birth of our Sumatran orangutan at Chester Zoo. We’re currently supporting Felicity with her research around accurately ageing orangutans.

“Sending best wishes from all the orangutan team here to the orangutan team on the arrival of Subis’ new baby! By the way of a birthday card I’m sending a recent photo taken of Manja with her first born daughter Mamai…

Mamai with mum Manja in the wild. Photo credit: Mohd. Daisah Kapar
Mamai with mum Manja in the wild. Photo credit: Mohd. Daisah Kapar

“Mamai has just turned one year old. The photo was captured so wonderfully by Mohd. Daisah Kapar and represents a great spirit of hope for us. Manja essentially grew up with our project, so in this sense, the birth of Mamai is the first ‘second generation’ of sorts – an orangutan that grew up over the past 17 – 18 years with observers from the field team.

“It is also our first opportunity to witness how a first time mum copes in the wild in our study site. Manja is doing a great job as is evident by the healthy and relaxed baby you can see in the photo.

“We hopefully will also have some genetic results soon to confirm just how close a relative she is to Jenny, our ‘matriarch’ and wild Bornean parallel of sorts to Chester Zoo’s Subis!

New arrival at Chester Zoo, with mum Subis
New arrival at Chester Zoo, with mum Subis

Our new arrival has been named Siska, after Indonesian vet Siska Sulistyo who has spent the past three months working at the zoo. Read more about her visit here. The six week old orangutan was named after our guest as she was the first one to spot her with her mum Subis.

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