Baby orangutan bonds with surrogate mother at Illinois zoo

Baby orangutan Kecil, 6 months, is bonding well with his surrogate mother, Maggie, at Brookfield Zoo.
Baby Kecil is Brookfield Zoo's newest orangutan. The 6-month-old was actually born in Ohio and is now being raised by surrogate a mother - a Bornean orangutan named Maggie.

Jay Petersen, Brookfield Zoo Curator of Primates and Carnivores, explained that Kecil's mother in Ohio and another surrogate mother in Milwaukee showed little interest in caring for the baby orangutan. Petersen said fortunately, Kecil and Maggie have formed a great bond, which grows each day.

PHOTOS: Baby orangutan Kecil bonds with his new mom


"Maggie is an easygoing and gentle orangutan. The two have been together since Kecil's arrival, and Maggie has provided care and attention that he needs to receive from an orangutan," Petersen said. "Kecil seems calm and adaptable to the changing situations in his young life. The moves don't seem to have fazed him at all. We are all hoping that Brookfield Zoo will be his last move for a while."

Brookfield Zoo expects Kecil to be ready for visitors by 2015, once he becomes more mobile and agile.

For more information, visit the Brookfield Zoo-Chicago Zoological Society's website dedicated to Kecil.
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