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Rare Florida Orangutan Mom Can't Stop Kissing Her Beautiful New Baby

Kelli Bender

Dee Dee is delighted with her new year’s gift.

According to Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo, the park’s rare Bornean orangutan Dee Dee gave birth to a baby ape on Jan. 6. The new arrival weighed only 3 lbs. at birth, but she is big news for orangutan conservationists.

Bornean orangutans are endangered, with less than 100 living in accredited institutions across North America, and not many more living out in the wild.

“This is a significant birth for the entire critically endangered Bornean orangutan population,” Chris Massaro, general curator at Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo, said in a statement. “It’s important to have the community along for this journey. We hope Dee Dee’s story inspires the public to become advocates for this incredible species and learn about the perils they face in the wild.”

The Bornean orangutan population, which is found in Malaysia and Indonesia, has declined over 50 percent during the past 60 years due to habitat loss, poaching and the illegal pet trade.

Dee Dee appears to realize that her kid is special too. The mom has showed no hesitation in caring for her new child, covering the little redhead in kisses and carrying the baby everywhere. This little girl is Dee Dee’s fourth child, so mom knows how to nurture.

The zoo says the mom and her little bundle of hairy joy are bonding well and are both in good health.

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Animal lovers can see the pair for themselves. Dee Dee and her baby girl made their public debut together on Jan. 11.