A baby orangutan at Sedgwick County Zoo has been getting a lot of individual attention, being hand-raised by zookeepers there. And now the zoo is asking for your help to name the baby, the zoo's third generation of an orangutan family.
The male baby, now 5 pounds, 1 ounce, was 3 pounds, 15 ounces when he was born at 6:30 a.m. May 19 at the zoo to Daisy.
To help select his name, cast your vote in the accompanying poll. You can vote twice through June 19: once here and once on the zoo's Facebook page at www.facebook.com/SedgwickCountyZoo.
Votes will be combined, and the zoo will announce the winner during the weekend of June 24.
The baby is not on display at the zoo yet. Daisy has not shown great interest in nursing, picking up or caring for her baby, said Christan Baumer, the zoo's marketing and public relations manager.
"As long as the keepers are still providing most of the care, he will be off exhibit," Baumer said.
In addition to caring for the baby, zookeepers are going through maternal training to help Daisy, Baumer said.
"It does get tiring" for the keepers, she said.
This is Daisy's second baby, but her first in Wichita.
Daisy, who is 29, was born at the Birmingham, Ala., zoo and lived at the Atlanta zoo before coming to Wichita in 2009, Baumer said. The zoo acquired her to breed with Panji, nearly 16, who was born at the zoo to Tia. Baumer said that Tia, who still lives at the zoo, is the second oldest orangutan on record worldwide at age 54. The three generations will be on display together in the exhibit once Daisy can care for her baby.
This infant is the seventh orangutan born at Sedgwick County Zoo.
Another way to help
The zoo also is asking for donations of formula, diapers or infant development toys for the orangutan. Those interested can bring them to the zoo's administration building between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. These are unplanned expenses for the zoo, Baumer said.
Specifically, the baby needs:
* Similac Sensitive formula. The zoo is using a 12.6 oz can of powder formula every five days.
* Pampers Stages diapers, which Baumer said the zookeepers have the baby wear while they are handling or feeding him. At night, the orangutan wears one to two Preemie Swaddlers New Baby size P-S.
* A floor gym for infants.