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Vote Now: Name the baby Siamang

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Posted at 2:31 PM, Feb 05, 2013
and last updated 2013-02-05 14:31:40-05
The Virginia Zoo's baby siamang, her mother, Hitam (left) and father, Bali, Thursday, Nov. 15, 2012 (Virginia Zoo photo by Winfield Danielson).

The Virginia Zoo’s baby siamang, her mother, Hitam (left) and father, Bali, Thursday, Nov. 15, 2012 (Virginia Zoo photo by Winfield Danielson).

Norfolk, Va. – The Virginia Zoo’s baby siamang naming event continues with a final vote by the public.

The top four names are Baaboo, Lola, Malaya and Siamangtha. The public can now vote for their favorite HERE until February 15, 2013.

“We’re holding this contest to celebrate the first baby born in our Asia – Trail of the Tiger exhibit and help raise awareness about the challenges siamangs face in the wild,” said Greg Bockheim, the Zoo’s executive director.

“Siamangs need our help to protect the environment in which they live.”

He added that people should support Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil member organizations, which use only sustainable palm oil to protect critical habitat.

First-time mother Hitam delivered the baby on Aug. 20, but Zoo staff needed to confirm the baby’s sex before the naming event. It’s a girl, by the way.

Members of the public then suggested names on the Virginia Zoo’s Facebook Fan Page until Jan. 15, after which Zoo staff voted on the suggestions during an all-staff meeting Thursday, Jan. 31.

Siamangs are native to the rainforests of Southeast Asia and are the largest species of gibbon. Like their larger orangutan cousins, their survival in the wild is under serious threat from habitat loss due to plantation expansion – particularly palm oil plantations – forest fires, illegal logging and other real estate development.

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