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Happy 8th Birthday Keju!

Hi it’s Emily from the Orangutan Team, and I’m here to share with you some exciting news about our youngest orangutan: Keju is celebrating her 8th birthday!

Keju came to Zoo Atlanta in 2015 and joined Madu’s family group. Keju is Madu’s fourth foster baby that Madu has raised. Orangutans have a lot to learn, and it is best for them to be raised by other orangutans to learn essential skills and how to be orangutans.

Keju, the youngest orangutan at Zoo Atlanta, is known for being spunky, playful, and highly energetic. Some of her favorite activities include playing and sharing food with her foster brother Remy. You may see her running around the habitat with Remy in a friendly game of tag, one of Keju’s favorite games.

One of Keju’s best skills is her ability to nest build. At night she is normally found perfecting her nest and trying to include as many different substrates and toys as she can. Another skill she has perfected is her tool use. Orangutans are known for their tool use, and Keju excels at it. She is very good at using her browse sticks to fish anything she has her eyes on.

Why is her 8th birthday so special? This is because in the wild at 8-years-old an orangutan individual may be considered old enough to leave their mother and start their own solitary life – although females tend to live near their mothers in adjacent trees for several more years. However, Keju would like to remind everyone that is extremely normal to see individuals in zoos spend up to 12 years with their mother before leaving.

Emily van Mulbregt
Keeper I, Primates

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