Baby gibbon at KC Zoo startles live TV crew as mom rappels from above

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February 07 2021 06:00 pm

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A tiny little ape made a big entrance on live TV on FOX4 this morning, shocking the crew with both its sudden appearance and unbelievable cuteness.

The white-cheeked gibbon, native to southeast Asia, is a critically endangered species. That’s why the birth of the new female baby, named Leilani, is a big deal.

However, FOX4’s Matt Stewart and the anchors back at the station never expected the fast-moving, elusive ape to be so camera friendly.

“Gibbon–” THUMP! “–Tuesday… Woah!” Matt said in surprise, turning around to see the mother, who had rappelled from above, hanging on the glass of the exhibit.

Baby Leilani clung to her mom’s waist.

“She wanted to say ‘Hi!'” Matt said. “She wanted to show off her little baby. That is perfect. Oh my gosh, isn’t she adorable?

The nine-month-old was born blond. She will change color and turn black in its youth, and then she will go back to full blond at full maturity.

“This is a global thing,” Kansas City Zoo Director Randy Wistoff said. “It’s an international breeding program, and we’re partnered right here in Kansas City.”

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