This update was written by primate keeper Melba Brown.
Now that our 13-week-old western lowland gorilla infant Moke is practicing his walking skills, we are beginning to see some interesting changes in the social dynamics of our mixed-sex troop. This week, I observed Moke’s mom, Calaya, place him on the hay and take a step back. At that point, he started to walk in her direction. While facing him, she continued to take steps back, encouraging him to walk! Moke looked directly at his mom and picked up the pace. Her encouragement was remarkable to see.