Cutest picture ever? Gorilla 'tickles' newborn baby's feet at Chessington

Ruth Doherty

Here's a picture that could melt the hardest of hearts... a newborn baby Gorilla at Chessington Zoo has its feet tickled by its proud mother.

Cutest picture ever? Gorilla 'tickles' newborn baby's feet at Chessington
Cutest picture ever? Gorilla 'tickles' newborn baby's feet at Chessington

Chessington Zoo

This is the second baby gorilla to be born to one of the six female Western Lowland gorillas at Chessington in 2012, thanks to the zoo's successful breeding programme, reputed to be one of the best in Europe.

Although its gender is yet to be determined, it is hoped that the new youngster will befriend its half brothers Mbula and Mwana, who were born to mothers Buu and Asili respectively.

James Mackie, Gorilla Keeper at Chessington Zoo, told Aol Travel: "We're absolutely delighted to be welcoming another young gorilla into the group. Shanga is new to motherhood, so it's been touching to see her bonding with her new arrival. She's even had a few pointers from her own mother, Shani.

Cutest picture ever? Gorilla 'tickles' newborn baby's feet at Chessington
Cutest picture ever? Gorilla 'tickles' newborn baby's feet at Chessington

Chessington Zoo

"This is the third baby that's been fathered by our stud gorilla, Damisi, after he was introduced in 2008, and the second this year. The Western Lowland gorilla is a vulnerable species which reproduces slowly; females tend to produce only one baby every five years on average, so for Chessington to have welcomed two babies this year really is cause for celebration.

"With the school summer holidays now kicking off, as well as all the events around London this summer, we expect we'll have plenty of visitors eager to catch a glimpse of the new born."

This summer, Chessington is celebrating its own birthday, as the resort celebrates 25 years as a theme park.

Ooh and aah over more pics of the new baby gorilla here:

Cutest picture ever? Gorilla 'tickles' newborn baby's feet at Chessington
Cutest picture ever? Gorilla 'tickles' newborn baby's feet at Chessington

Chessington Zoo

Chessington Zoo

Cutest picture ever? Gorilla 'tickles' newborn baby's feet at Chessington
Cutest picture ever? Gorilla 'tickles' newborn baby's feet at Chessington

Chessington Zoo

Chessington Zoo

And here's a super-cute video, too:



See more gorgeous baby animal pics here:

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