Blog: Kecil Orangutan

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Kecil orangutan climbing


Kecil has reached all the milestones we have been waiting for. In just in the past few weeks, he has become proficient in climbing and finding his way around all the enclosures behind the scenes in Tropic World.  Just a month or two ago, Kecil might feel brave and climb to the top of the enclosure only to cry for Maggie to help him get down. Now, he rarely cries for help because he no longer gets stuck and is able to easily follow her. He seems to prefer to spend time up high just as an arboreal orangutan should.  Maggie has also been more protective as Kecil becomes more independent which will be helpful when Kecil goes onto exhibit. He will need an attentive and cautious Maggie to show him how to navigate the more complex exhibit. 

Kecil Orangutan Climbing
We have made some changes to the exhibit to help Kecil get around.  We have added some hanging vines and some vines leading from his enclosure to the exhibit to help him get out on his own. These vines are just like the ones he has been climbing on behind the scenes. Normally a one-year-old orangutan would be carried by his mother. At her age, Maggie is not able to carry him but she holds onto his arm or leg and encourages him to grab onto her as she moves. The new vines should help both of them. We’ve also introduced a large branch in the enclosure for Kecil to play on. It is exactly like the trees he will encounter on exhibit and he began climbing all over it as soon as we gave it to him. See the photo of Kecil on his branch!  With Kecil’s developmental progress and the above changes, we feel set for the big day.

Maggie and Kecil OrangutanGo
For the first period of time that Kecil is on exhibit we are going to close the Asia section of Tropic World to guests.  We want to see how Kecil and Maggie react and keep things quiet and low keyed for them initially. So if you see a barricade you will be one of the few who know what’s going on that day in Asia! Once Kecil seems comfortable, we will open the exhibit for his big debut!  We will be sure to let all of you know when you can finally come see Kecil and Maggie on exhibit in person, so stay tuned!

- Tropic World Asia Keepers

KLOG entry Feb 25, 2015- We added an exhibit branch to Kecil’s enclosure today.  He ran right over to it and climbed on.  It was suspended so he was pretty unstable on it but he held on well!
KLOG entry March 5, 2015 – Kecil is starting a new diet today.  His solids will be increasing now that he is eating them more reliably and his formula will be reduced by 20%.   Please note daily how much of his new diet he is eating.


Posted: 3/16/2015 3:11:55 PM by Filed under: Animal Welfare, Kecil, Maggie, orangutan, Tropic World

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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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