Blog: Kecil Orangutan

Kecil's Daily Care

A six-month old orangutan infant who is raised by his mother would be getting all of his nutrition from his mother’s milk. Since Kecil is being raised by Maggie, we need to provide him with a proper diet. Our staff nutritionist Jennifer Watts, PhD, has formulated an appropriate diet to insure Kecil is getting all the vitamins, calories and nutrition he needs to grow and thrive. Kecil is on a diet of formula, and infant cereal (oatmeal) mixed with about 1 tablespoon of banana.

Kecil being bottlefedKecil knows to come up to keepers for both his bottle and his cereal and he loves both! Sometimes he is fast asleep for his 3:30 AM and 7:30 AM bottles which are fed to him by our Night Keeper. Maggie wakes him up gently and he holds onto some part of her body, her head or arm as she brings him up to the Night Keeper so Kecil can drink his bottle.

We are offering just one new food item per week to be sure he doesn’t have an allergic reaction to any new diet items. So far he’s tried carrots and applesauce. He seems to be a fan of both these foods. (Next week it will be green beans.) We write a daily report that we use to record all relevant information and use this report to communicate important information to other zoo staff, the vet staff and the nutritionist. It is then archived in his personal records. We call this report a KLOG (which stands for Keeper Log). See below for a few excerpts from the KLOG about little Kecil.

- Tropic World Asia Keepers

Maggie & KecilKLOG Entry - July 15, 2014: Kecil drank all his formula from the night keepers last night. Maggie had to wake him for his 3:30 AM bottle but once she woke him up, he drank well. He was observed playing with the new toy we hung up for him frequently today.

KLOG Entry – July 18, 2014: Kecil seems to be teething. He is chewing on everything in sight including Maggie’s fingers and face! Gave him a cool wet cloth to chew on and he sucked and chewed on it for a long time. He eventually lost it in the hay bedding and Maggie found it and traded it to keeper for a treat.

KLOG Entry - July 22, 2014: Maggie somersaulted around the cage a few times, soliciting play from Kecil. He didn't respond to her. Kecil was especially concentrating on working out his legs at this time (doing "squats").

Posted: 8/5/2014 11:50:23 AM by Filed under: baby, Kecil, Maggie, orangutan, primates

kim harmon
I am currently taking an on-line veterinarian course and my teacher is asking each student to interview with a person currently in the career of veterinary nutrition. I have read about Jennifer Watts and I was wondering if I could contact her by e-mail because I think what she does is interesting and has a great deal of knowledge in her field. I have to write a paper on someone active in the career. So I choose her.
2/7/2015 1:21:21 PM

Kecil Orangutan

Updates on baby orangutan Kecil who arrived at Brookfield Zoo on June 20, 2014 to be introduced to a surrogate mom, Maggie, the zoo’s 53-year-old Bornean orangutan.


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