Otter Mom Gives Surprise Birth at Monterey Bay Aquarium
"The first few days were critical for the baby, it was vital that she was kept warm and began taking small amounts of formula milk. We started ‘skin-to-skin' contact – a process used with human newborn babies – and she responded well to this and is getting stronger and more alert each day," said curator of mammals, Lynsey Bugg in a statement.
The mother is reported as "recovering" and is also being closely monitored.
This marks the first time a gorilla has been born by cesarean at the Bristol Zoo and is among only a handful of such births worldwide, according to a release from the University of Bristol.
Koko the Gorilla Still a Wonder at 44
"The birth of any gorilla is a rare and exciting event; but the birth of a baby gorilla by cesarean section is even more unusual. It wasn't a decision that we took lightly – Kera was becoming quite poorly and we needed to act fast in order to give the best possible treatment to mother and baby, and to avoid the possibility of losing the baby," said Birstol Zoo's senior curator of animals, John Partridge, in a press release.
Dr. Cahill, a Professor in Reproductive Medicine and Medical Education at the University of Bristol's School of Clinical Sciences and gynecologist in St Michael's Hospital, had delivered hundreds of human babies by C-section throughout his career - but this was his first baby gorilla delivery by the method.
"Along with having my own children, this is probably one of the biggest achievements of my life and something I will certainly never forget," Cahill said in a statement. "I have since been back to visit Kera and the baby gorilla, it was wonderful to see them both doing so well."