What Happened When an Orangutan Mother and Her Baby Were Reunited

When rescuers were put in charge of reuniting this primate family after a seperation, they did not know how it would all go down. They did not know what to expect and were concerned about everyones reaction. However, there was nothing that could have prepared these animal keepers for what they were about to witness. Once this Orangutan mother got hold of her little newborn baby after it was taken away from her after birth, her reaction was a surprising one, as well as a sweet one.

Orangutans are very similar to humans in their parenting manners. The challenges of being a parent are alive and well no matter what species you are, it is all about survival and care. Primates are as similar to human beings as any other animal in the world, and their mothering tactics are not unlike humans either. When this new mother got her baby back to hold, you could quite literally see the joy on her face and the sweet relief of having her young back together with her. It is the most natural thing in the world for a mother to want to be with her child, and in the wild it is no exception at all. Wait until you see it for yourself. 

Living in a Cage

Mother orangutan, Clara, and her newborn baby, were brought to the Nyaru Menteng Orangutan Rescue Centre in Borneo after they experienced a truly traumatic experience that left the caretakers at the rescue centre very concerned for the two primates. 

Clara was placed in a cage surrounded by nature in order to recover, while her little one was taken to have the caretakers take a closer look to make sure it was doing alright since it was so young and had also been in the difficult situation that its mother had been. 


The traumatic situation in question happened in the rescue centre they were living along with other primates. Clara had had her baby kidnapped from her right after she gave birth, by an aggressive male orangutan who ripped them apart to assert his own dominance. 

The keepers tried to mend the situation as fast as they could but the baby needed to be kept separate from Clara for its own safety for the time being, causing Clara a lot of distress. 

Dangerous Reunion

The keepers eventually wanted to bring the mother and baby together again. The baby named Clarita was brought back to her mother. The keepers were watching very closely as this was a dangerous situation for both of them but especially for the baby. In situation such as this, some orangutan mothers reject their babies altogether. 

Some do not recognize them and therefore end up hurting them as a result of their unfamiliarity. The keepers wanted to make sure that this was not going to be the case between Clara and Clarita. 

Momma Meets Baby

The keepers brought the baby to her mother, holding her as they brought her closer to the cage, were making sure both of the primates were feeling good about the reunion. They both were recovering from a skin rash, but even with that, Clara seemed to be very interested in the small bundle that was being held up to her. 

This could go either way at this point, but the hope was that Clara was going to recognize her baby. 

Hands On

There were several keepers around to make sure that if they were needed in an event where the two needed to be separated, they were there to help. Clara seemed happy to see her baby girl. She put her hands through the bars and was trying to grab hold of her little one. 

The keeper holding Clarita was concerned about Clara so she tried to keep her at arms reach but also not too close. They were still concerned about her hurting the baby by mistake. 


It was clear however, that Clara was not about to hurt her little one. She reached her mouth from beyond the cage bars and landed a soft kiss on Clarita's head. She also tried to pet her head and fur and tried her best to try and hold her through the bars. 

This was exactly what the keepers had hoped for when it came to the mother's reaction to her young. Clara and Clarita were on their way to being reunited permanently. 

Wary Keepers

While this was well under way to being a wonderful reunion that was going to mean even greater things for this small family, the keepers were still wary about taking this too far. Clara's curiosity is a primate trait that they all have and at times is not a possessive one. 

There was a concern that Clara saw Clarita as a toy and not her child and so they needed to test this out just a little bit more to make sure that Clarita was safe with Clara. 

Opening the Cage

Now that it was clear to the keepers that Clara was interested in Clarita, the keepers decided to open her cage and show Clara and child without her cage getting in the way. Still, they were carefully going about this so as to make sure Clarita was safe. 

They opened the cage door to present Clarita to her mom and Clara to her baby. These two even looked more alike because of their recovery from the skin rash that that had both gotten. 

Helping Hand

In a comic twist, Clara was so impatient to hold her baby that she helped the keeper open her cage door by holding onto the lock. She knew she was about to be reunited with her baby and wanted it to happen as fast as possible. 

These were all positive signs that Clara was not going to reject or hurt Clarita and that these two may be reunited on a more permanent basis after their trying experience and separation from each other.