Gorilla Believed to be Male surprisingly Gives Birth, astonishing zookeepers in Ohio, US

The staff members working at an Ohio zoo were left surprised after a gorilla, which they believed to be a male for four years, gave birth on Thursday (July 20).

Columbus Zoo stated that gorilla Sully, who has been staying with them since 2019, was found with her baby on Thursday. In the blog post, the zookeepers said that the infant “appears to be healthy” and that Sully was appearing to be an excellent mother.

They further said that Sully was always in good health because of which the officials never needed to examine her which led to the confusion.

Male gorilla turns out to be a new mom

The birth “was unexpected, yet exciting for the care team and important for the conservation of a critically endangered species”, said the zookeepers in a blog post.

Nothing was suspected by the zookeepers till they saw the “believed to be male” gorilla nursing her child. “It’s hard to tell the sex of younger gorillas,” they stated.

Sully The "Male" Gorilla Surprises Zookeepers By Giving Birth To A Baby  Girl | IFLScience


Gorilla not old enough to show gender

The zoo authorities said that Sully was old enough to reproduce at eight years of age, however, she was still too young to show any obvious signs of her gender.

Columbus Zoo's 'male' gorilla gives staff surprise of their life - by giving  birth - Mirror Online

“Until about eight, males and females are about the same size, and they don’t have prominent sex organs. Males don’t develop… their silver backs until 12 or later,” the authorities said.

Generally, gorillas fail to show any signs of pregnancy because of their large abdomens and infant gorillas appear significantly smaller compared to human babies.

Zookeepers thought this gorilla was male until it gave birth to a baby

“We’re thrilled by the addition of another birth for this critically endangered species,” the zoo stated.

Zoo to conduct DNA test to determine father

Gorilla, believed to be male, leaves zoo staff surprised by giving birth -  Trending News

“As the 34th gorilla born here since 1956 when the Columbus Zoo became the first zoo in the world to welcome the birth of a baby gorilla, she’s an important part of our work to conserve these magnificent animals,” the authorities added.

The zoo stated that DNA tests would be conducted by them to determine the baby gorilla’s father. Sully has been staying in a troop which is led by silverback Mac, 39, and also has two younger males Kamoli, 10, and JJ, six.

An Ohio zoo staff was shocked when their "male" gorilla gave birth - Boing  Boing

Despite the hiccup with Sully, the zoo stated that they are confident about the newborn’s sex. “It’s a girl! Our team confirmed that visually and with photographs that were also sent to a primate expert at another leading zoological facility,” the zoo stated.

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