Little Rock Zoo adds a male gorilla | Arkansas Blog

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Little Rock Zoo adds a male gorilla

Posted By on Thu, May 19, 2016 at 3:02 PM

click to enlarge KIVU: Now in Little Rock. - SANTA BARBARA ZOO
  • Santa Barbara Zoo
  • KIVU: Now in Little Rock.
Another new arrival at the Little Rock Zoo — a male western lowland gorilla.

The 24-year-old silverback will be in quarantine for 30 days. He will be able to see, hear and smell female gorillas and, after the 30 days, be introduced to the group and the public viewing area.

This was one of two males gorillas in the Santa Barbara Zoo. The other has joined female gorillas at the Cheyenne, Colo., Zoo.

The idea is to use the males to mate and develop genetic diversity in captive gorilla populations to help continue the species. Said a Zoo release from zoo director Mike Blakely:

It’s our hope that Kivu will step in and lead the troop. In the wild silverbacks sire the young, guide the group to feeding and sleeping areas and protect them from threats. It’s our hope that Kivu will father baby gorillas to save this endangered species.

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