Who’s the daddy? Surprise in Swiss orangutan paternity test

BERLIN (AP) – A paternity test on a baby orangutan has come back with a surprising result.

Basel Zoo in northwestern Switzerland said on Thursday the test showed five-month-old Padma wasn’t fathered by the male in her enclosure.

Keepers routinely take DNA samples from newborn orang-utans because the endangered great apes are part of a breeding programme. Researchers at Basel University’s forensic laboratory compared Padma’s DNA to that of Budi, a 14-year-old male living in the same enclosure as the baby’s mother, Maja.

They found it didn’t match Budi’s DNA. Instead, it matched 18-year-old orangutan Vendel, who lives in the next enclosure.

A zoo keeper take DNA samples from female orangutan Maja to determine the paternity of her daughter Padma at the Basel Zoo. – AP