Oldest Male Gorilla in N. America Turns 50

by kespeland on January 8, 2009

Timmy, the Louisville Zoo’s western lowland gorilla, has led a pretty good life, considering. He’s got a posse of females, a dependable food supply, adoring fans. And he doesn’t have to worry about hunters, loggers, or the ebola virus, all of which are endangering his brethren in central Africa. Timmy is the oldest male gorilla in North America; he lives at the Louisville Zoo.

A new outbreak of ebola, the horrifying hemorrhagic fever, has just been confirmed in Congo, part of the gorillas’ range. It’s not likely a gorilla could catch the disease from a human, but the disease has been found in the animals. Slaughtering them for bush meat could help spread the disease.

You can learn more about Timmy this Sunday on Studio 619; that’s when host Stephanie Sanders talks with Timmy’s keeper.

You can also efforts to protect gorillas at the World Wildlife Fund’s web site, ; learn more about the ebola outbreak and how health workers are trying to contain it at Doctors without Borders’ site.

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