Calgary

Calgary Zoo babies: gorilla grows, king penguin looks marvelous

Calgary Zoo’s baby gorilla continues to improve health wise and an awkward little penguin is now a lot less awkward.

'She is already starting to cut her first couple of teeth,' vet says of baby gorilla

Kioja's baby, left, is doing a lot better and king penguin Nero has shed his fluffy brown feathers. (Drew Anderson/CBC)

Calgary Zoo's baby gorilla continues to improve health wise, and an awkward little penguin is now a lot less awkward, officials say.

Senior staff veterinarian Dr. Doug Whiteside says the as yet unnamed baby gorilla who was born March 9 had a rocky start.

Zoo keepers had to anaesthetize her mother, Kioja, so they could handle the baby, feed her and give her fluids.

Today, the baby is doing much better.

"She continues to grow. She is getting stronger every day. She is starting to become a little bit more independent," Whiteside said.

"She is already starting to cut her first couple of teeth. She is doing really well. We are very happy."

The zoo is hoping the public can help name the baby with a poll up until Sunday.

King penguin Nero 'moulting'

Another favourite zoo baby is growing out of his awkward stage.

Nero, a king penquin born last fall, became a bit of a celebrity when images of his fluffy brown feathers and round form surfaced.

Nero, left of centre, in his awkward stage in January. (Ayesha Clough/CBC)

He was quite the contrast to his peers and parents, in their regal black and white suits.

Today, he has shed most of the brown feathers and he's grown into his body. He looks a lot more penquin-like.

The Calgary Zoo tweeted his transformation Thursday.

While not a baby, Zuri, a 19-year-old lowland gorilla, is also doing better and is spending time with her daughter Yewande.

The zoo called Zuri's condition critical late last month after a severe abdominal infection required an emergency operation.

"Her attitude and activity level is increasing day by day," Whiteside said.

Zuri is not quarantined, but she's not fully integrated with the other gorillas just yet.

"She has daily visits, several times a day with her daughter Yewande," he said.

With files from Drew Anderson

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