Denver Zoo Needed a Paternity Test. They Got a Famous Expert

Maury Povich announces father of 4-month-old orangutan Siska, to great fanfare
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 21, 2023 8:45 AM CST

Maury Povich has shifted into retirement mode in recent years—he wrapped up his talk show in 2022, and he was recently presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Daytime Emmys—but his services are apparently still in demand. At least at the Denver Zoo, which recruited the 84-year-old TV personality to perform one of his famous paternity tests on one of its newest residents. The Colorado zoo wasn't sure who the father was of Siska, a now 4-month-old Sumatran orangutan born in August, with both 16-year-old Jaya and 30-year-old Berani in the running for dad duty.

Siska's mother, Eirina, had been alone with each male, and there was "some courtship and mating activity" with both, zoo communications chief Jake Kubie tells People. "Apparently I was a bigger Maury Povich fan than I thought, and his voice just popped into my head," Kubie says. "I thought maybe he'd be open to doing this for us." Kubie reached out to Povich's people, and Povich agreed to take part in the big reveal, which the zoo teased the day beforehand. DNA from Siska, Berani, and Jaya for the test was obtained via their hair follicles.

Povich showed up in a tux for the occasion, and CBS News notes that the reveal came complete with split screen and cheering audience, just like on Povich's show. "Berani, you ARE the father!" Maury announced, naming the older primate to cheers and applause from zoo workers. At the event where Povich accepted his Daytime Emmy on Saturday, he gave a shoutout to his famous catchphrase, telling Entertainment Tonight of his legacy, "They're gonna remember, 'You are the father, you are not the father.' That's what they're gonna remember." (More strange stuff stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.