The group is so thrilled about the new birth - Look at little Lomela on the far left - can you all believe she's so big?? And that's Mbano, Etumbe's son, on her right.
Here is a letter from Suzy, our Congolese student in the field:
Everything is going well in the forest with the bonobos. On the 18th of July, it was a historic day for the world of conservation. the stars rose for the first time, as Ekolo ya Bonobo (land of the bonobos) was graced with the handsome baby of Etumbe.
At 4:30pm, the keepers at the enclosure signaled that Etumbe was having contractions! At 5pm, Etumbe didn't want to eat. Her son, Mbano, was in the trees, behaving very excitedly. The other bonobos were strangely calm. We all suspected the baby was coming when Mbano turned around in circles without stopping and crying out in excitement.
On the morning of July 19, the females were all gathered around Etumbe and we suspected the happy moment had arrived. Moments later, Etumbe arrive, with her newborn in her arms. What a joy to discover this baby delivered only a month after the release!
It's a beautiful baby. He is covered in thick, black hair, brilliant shining eyes and is plainly in good health. OUr best and warmest congratualtions to Etumbe, who has given birth to the first released baby bonobo from Lola!!