Watch: Maine mum talks about viral encounter with mother gorilla
The video of two mothers, one human one gorilla, gazing at each other’s offspring was shared on 9 May after one family’s trip to the zoo.
“I was just in awe,” Emily Austin, from Maine said to News Centre Maine, who went her husband Michael and 5-month-old baby Canyon to Franklin Park Zoo where they caught the eye of a Western Lowland gorilla.
“She kept looking around the corner of the cave, and I was like, ‘She’s looking at Canyon,’” Ms Austin continued, saying that the gorilla, named Kiki, was looking at her baby “lovingly” for several minutes.
Austin was aghast until Kiki picked up her own little one, a 7-month old named Pablo, and held him up against the enclosure’s glass, the NBC affiliate news outlet said.
They went on to give each other a good look at their babies like they were two mothers meeting each other in any social setting. Kiki even tried to touch Canyon, despite the glass separating them and “hold his hand”, Ms Austin said.
“Her face was just so in love. She was showing her baby, my baby.”
Canyon was said to be sleeping throughout the whole exchange, Ms Austin intends to go back to the zoo so she can see her new mother friend.
“When I walked into the zoo that day, I never could’ve imagined that we’d have this experience,” she said.
Gorillas and humans have had this maternal connection before when looking at a human infant. A 3-year-old boy was rescued by a gorilla at Brookfield Zoo in Chicago in 1996.
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