World’s oldest male gorilla dies at Zoo Atlanta

ATLANTA — Zoo Atlanta announced that Ozzie, the world’s oldest male gorilla, died Jan. 25. He was 61.

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He was found dead by his care team. Ozzie’s cause of death is not known, but he had decreaed appetite recently and was being treated to encourage him to eat and drink. He had also experienced facial swelling and weakness. A necropsy will be performed through the Zoo’s partnership with the University of Georgia Zoo and Exotic Animal Pathology Service.

“This is a devastating loss for Zoo Atlanta. While we knew this time would come someday, that inevitability does nothing to stem the deep sadness we feel at losing a legend,” said Raymond B. King, Zoo Atlanta’s president and CEO. “Ozzie’s life’s contributions are indelible, in the generations of individuals he leaves behind in the gorilla population and in the world’s body of knowledge in the care of his species. Our thoughts are with his care team, who have lost a part of their lives and a part of their hearts.”

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Ozzie was the last surviving member of the original generation of gorillas who arrived at zoo’s outdoor exhibit in 1988, which also featured the late Willie B.

Earlier this month, Zoo Atlanta lost the then fourth-oldest gorilla, Choomba. She was 59.

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According to Zoo Atlanta’s news release, Ozzie was a western lowland gorilla, which is a critically endangered species.

Our hearts are broken at the passing of a legend. We’re devastated to share that Ozzie, the world’s oldest male gorilla,...

Posted by Zoo Atlanta on Tuesday, January 25, 2022

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