Springtime in Denver means warmer weather, longer days, and best of all, the arrival of baby animals at the zoo. The most recent arrival is a newborn female Sumatran orangutan, named Cerah.
Cerah, which means “bright” in Indonesian, will join her mom, Nias, and father, Berani, as the newest member of the critically endangered Sumatran orangutans, who have a worldwide population estimated at only 14,600.
Sumatran orangutans, one of three species of orangutans, are endangered largely due to threats of logging, conversion of forest to agricultural land and oil palm plantations, and fragmentation by roads.
Nias and Berani, Cerah’s parents, had something of an arranged marriage. The two were paired together under recommendation by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Species Survival Plan Program, which oversees the population management of select species within AZA member institutions and enhances conservation of these species in the wild. The pairing was a success, with Cerah being conceived less than a month after her parents met.
Cerah is now available for public viewing, in the Great Apes exhibit in Primate Panorama, according to the Denver Zoo.