New baby on the way at Rockhampton Zoo

Published on 03 September 2021


Exciting news has come from Rockhampton Zoo today - the chimpanzee family is growing!

Parks, Sport and Public Spaces Councillor Cherie Rutherford, together with Zoo staff, officially announced this morning that Leakey is pregnant.

The 26 year old chimp, who gave birth to the Zoo’s first chimpanzee baby, Capri, in 2018, is expected to give birth in December.

Cr Rutherford said she and Zoo staff are ecstatic to share the news with the community.

“We are absolutely thrilled to announce today that Leakey is pregnant with her second baby and that we will soon have another chimpanzee in the troop,” Cr Rutherford said.

“Zoo staff are keeping a close watch on Leakey and all is going smoothly and she is doing really well.

“Nothing has changed much in terms of her food cravings and her baby bump is just starting to show now despite being five months into her pregnancy.

“She is due very early December however as we have found out previously chimps never seem give birth when we expect them to!”

Chimpanzees carry for 237 days, or about eight-and-a-half months.

Alon, the troop’s alpha male, is the father of the baby. He is father to each of the chimp babies who, as well as Capri, include Gandali - who was born in 2020 to mother Holly.

“We’re really looking forward to seeing Capri become a big sister once more and Gandali having the official title of big brother,” Cr Rutherford said.

“Leakey has weaned Capri, and as many visiting the troop would see, she is very independent these days. Capri spends most of her day doing her own thing and interacting with the other members of the group however she still seeks mum out when she needs comforting.”

The chimpanzee family, along with all animals of the Zoo, can be visited between 10am and 4pm each day. Entry to the Zoo is free.

The Rockhampton Zoo is owned and operated by Rockhampton Regional Council.