Zookeepers hand-raise baby gorilla

Feb. 18, 2013 at 5:33 PM

BROWNSVILLE, Texas, Feb. 18 (UPI) -- Officials at a Texas zoo said they are hand-raising a 17-day-old gorilla that appeared to have been rejected by her mother.

Jerry Stones, facilities director at the Gladys Porter Zoo in Brownsville, said Kiazi, a gorilla on loan from the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden, gave birth Jan. 29 and soon seemed to have rejected the baby, The Brownsville (Texas) Herald reported Monday.

"The mother just ignored it and walked away; every once in a while there's a female that does that," Stones said.

Stones and his ex-wife, Cindy Stones, supervisor of the Small World exhibit, where the zoo keeps baby animals, have been caring for the infant gorilla.

"You know what it's like to stay up all night?" Cindy Stones said. "She got up every 2 hours last night."

The baby will be transferred to the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden within the next week, officials said.

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