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NC Zoo gorilla dies after unidentified illness

Posted September 3, 2013
Updated September 4, 2013

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— Veterinarians at the NC Zoo euthanized "Nkosi," a 21-year-old male gorilla Tuesday. Nkosi had been ill for more than a week and treatments were not helping, the zoo staff said.

A necropsy, or animal autopsy, will be performed, and the zoo plans to send samples to outside laboratories to try and identify what made him so ill.

“Despite the best efforts of the zoo’s veterinary and keeper staffs working round-the-clock, by Sunday morning Nik was unable to move, eat or drink,” said Adrian Fowler, the zoo's curator of mammals.

“This is an extremely sad day for the entire zoo,” said Director Dr. David Jones. “Our gorilla family has been one of our great successes over the last few years. Nkosi was a terrific father to Bomassa and Apollo and will be very difficult to replace.”

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  • DontVote4LiarsCheatsOrThieves Sep 4, 2013

    Awww, sorry to hear this.

    I always felt so sorry for those animals. You could see in their eyes they understood they were captive and that they longed for freedom.

    I often think some animals are far smarter than humans, certainly far smarter than some humans.

  • deborah59 Sep 4, 2013

    Poisoned ?

  • zenonx6 Sep 4, 2013

    Too much human interfearence.

  • JAT Sep 4, 2013

    you could look in his eyes and see that there was something more there. you just had to wonder what he was thinking.

  • Obamacare for everyone Sep 4, 2013

    Sad news. Poor guy. :(

  • moppie Sep 4, 2013

    Awww... We will miss Nkosi. When my daughter was 18 months we took her to the zoo for the first time. Nkosi was infatuated with her red hair and sat and watched us in front of the glass for a long time. I have pictures somewhere of Anna kissing the glass and Nkosi kissing back. Anna's now 10, and we she will be heartbroken that he's not there on our next trip.

  • 2xMom Sep 4, 2013

    Very sad. He had such personality. :-(

  • rastomp78 Sep 4, 2013

    My husband and I took our two grandsons to the zoo a couple of weeks ago and got to see the baby Apollo. They are a great attraction and we loved watching them play. You are right this is a sad day for NC.

  • momeeee Sep 4, 2013

    So sad.