Blackpool Zoo’s critically-endangered orangutan welcomes first ‘healthy’ baby

An incredibly important moment.

Emily Sergeant Emily Sergeant - 12th June 2024

Blackpool Zoo has got itself another new resident, and this one comes in the form of a beautiful baby orangutan.

Summer has become a mother for the first time ever.

The proud mother – who is one of five critically-endangered Bornean orangutans living at the Lancashire-based zoo in its state-of-the-art £1 million ‘Orangutan Outlook’ facility – gave birth to a “healthy” baby boy during the night on Sunday 28 April.

Carers at Blackpool Zoo say both Summer and her new baby, who is yet to be named, are “doing really well”.

They are currently “living happily” alongside another first-time mum, Jingga, and her son Jarang.


In case you’re unfamiliar with the Bornean orangutan and what makes the species – and this birth – so special, they were classified as ‘critically endangered’ by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) in July 2016, and this sadly means that the species now faces an “extremely high” risk of extinction in the wild.

The father of both Jarang and Summer’s new baby is called Kawan, and he came to Blackpool Zoo in 2022 from Apenheul Zoo over in the Netherlands as part of the European Endangered Species Programme (EEP).


Blackpool Zoo’s Director, Darren Webster, says the zoo is “delighted” to be welcoming “a new generation” of Bornean orangutans.

Speaking on the two special recent births for the zoo, Darren commented: “After more than 20 years of waiting, we are delighted to have had two Bornean orangutans born in Blackpool in the past 12 months. Summer was born here at Blackpool Zoo in 2002, and I’ve watched her grow and flourish over the last 22 years, so to see her become a mother is a huge honour.

“It’s testament to the incredible work and experience of our primate team.”


Darren also says these two births prove why breeding programmes, such as the EEP, are “absolutely vital” to keeping species thriving.

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“We are delighted to be welcoming a new generation of beautiful Bornean orangutans here at Blackpool Zoo,” Darren concluded.

Featured Image – Allison Allen (via Blackpool Zoo)