Help mummy name her baby ape!

Tali with her new baby
Tali with her new baby
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A MUMMY APE who has set up home in Drusillas Zoo needs help to name her baby.

Tali, a Lar Gibbon ape, gave birth to a beautiful ape baby on December 9 last year, 2011.

She belongs to an ape species from South-east Asia considered to be endangered.

For the past three months Tali has looked after her offspring day-and-night.

But she still can’t think of her name for him – despite her devotion to the hairy infant.

Mark Kenward, head keeper, said: “Tali was born to be a mother; she seems to thrive when she has a baby to take care of.

“On windy days she will find a place within her enclosure to keep the baby away from the breeze as well as teaching him everything he will need to know for life in the treetops.

“She is extremely protective and never lets him out of her sight, which is proving harder to do now that he has started to venture a little further.”

Mr Kenward added: “We will be certain to make sure Tali gets lots of her favourite treats on Mothers’ Day but in the meantime we are asking for people to help us name her precious bundle.

“We have a shortlist - Buri, Sholo or Bacho - but we are finding it difficult to decide between them.

“Please vote for your favourite on our Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/drusillaspark.”

Tali and her gibbon partner Ulu were introduced to the zoo in 2005 as part of a European breeding programme.

During the early years, gibbon babies remain dependent on their mothers for both warmth and food. Females work extremely hard, rearing their offspring singlehandedly whilst their male companions protect the group and territory.

The unnamed baby will be nursed for up to two years and will not reach full maturity until the age of eight.

Caption: Tali with her new baby. Photo taken by Dean Thorpe.