One of the most powerful things that bond humans and animals is motherhood: we’ve seen stories of primates being fascinated by humans and their babies, and sometimes an empathetic animal will show off their own young ones in return.
Now, new heartwarming, viral videos show a zookeeper’s sweet meeting with her gorilla pals as she shows off her new baby.
Mary Kate Findlay is a zookeeper, and a new mother. Her TikTok bio describes her as “just a girl who loves animals and figuring out this new mom thing.”
She has been on maternity leave recently after giving birth to her baby, but after 10 weeks decided to pay a visit to her workplace and check in on some friends.
A TikTok video shared by Mary, which has been viewed over 29 million times, shows the sweet moment she shows off her newborn to one of the zoo’s gorillas:
@maitekate The sweetest boy meeting my sweet baby for the first time #newborn #baby #momlife #workingmom #gorilla #zookeeper #maternityleave #fyp ♬ Send Me on My Way – Guy Meets Girl
The gorilla gets closer to the glass and stares in awe at the little human.
“The sweetest boy meeting my sweet baby for the first time,” Mary wrote on TikTok.
After the video went super viral on TikTok, Mary shared more videos of her primate buddies meeting her baby.
In a second video, a three-year-old gorilla is similarly fascinated by the baby — and gives the zookeeper a sweet “kiss” through the glass, as if he’s missed her while she’s been on leave.
@maitekate 10 weeks into maternity leave, and she immediately comes over to meet the baby and give her zookeeper a kiss #newborn #gorilla #fyp #workingmom #baby ♬ Time Machine – Muni Long
Not all the gorillas were as happy about the new arrival. In another video, Mary joked that the “baby of the troop” “has some feelings about another baby getting attention.”
“Someone’s not the littlest baby in my world anymore,” Mary wrote. The young gorilla comes up to the glass, acting a bit like a jealous sibling.
@maitekate Someone’s not the littlest baby in my world anymore… #fyp #gorilla #newborn #zookeeper #workingmom #baby #maternityleave ♬ Oh No – Kreepa
And another, older gorilla is just over the whole “baby” thing altogether.
“He’s already had two babies,” Mary writes, in a video that shows the gorilla with his back to her.
(But Mary wrote in the caption that the gorilla actually came up to her to “get a good look” at the baby, he just turned away once the camera started rolling. He’s happy for her, deep down.)
@maitekate You won’t believe me but he woke up from a nap & came over to get a good look at her. But the second I turn on the camera this is what he does 🙄 #fyp ♬ original sound – The Late Late Show
For many new mothers, one of the most exciting thing is seeing your loved ones meet your new baby for the first time.
And even though they’re animals, these gorillas had such a sweet reaction to Mary’s newborn — a reminder that animals aren’t so different from us after all.
@maitekate Thank you Phil Collins for the perfect soundtrack #fyp #gorilla #newborn #zookeeper #workingmom #baby ♬ Strangers Like Me – Knightsbridge
What sweet videos. We hope Mary will continue to keep bringing her child to meet these gorillas and they will get to see him grow up!
Share this heartwarming story!