Sad Animal News: Gorilla Accidentally Hangs Himself in Zoo

  • Share
  • Read Later
Petr Josek / Reuters

Gorilla Kijivu helps her nine-week-old baby gorilla Tatu to sit up at a zoo in Prague August 7, 2007.

The curiosity of the young gorilla Tatu has led to his hanging death in the Prague Zoo.

The 5-year-old gorilla, well-known around the world after his birth was broadcast live online in 2007, accidentally entangled himself with a climbing rope on Friday in the gorilla wing’s sleeping quarters. The room has no cameras in it, so zoo officials were unable to see the scene unfolding.

(PHOTOS: The Mountain Gorillas of Rwanda)

Zoo officials told the Associated Press that Tatu became enamored with a braided rope used by the group of six gorillas for climbing within the exhibit. Tatu, they say, unbraided the rope and somehow wrapped it around his neck in the hanging process.

Zookeepers rushed into the enclosure and struggled to get the other gorillas away from Tatu before an unsuccessful attempt to revive him. “It was mainly the female Kamba, the oldest member of the herd, who stubbornly refused to abandon Tatu,” zoo director Miroslav Bobek told the AFP news agency, though it was difficult to see if she was trying to help or not.

The last time a gorilla died in the Prague Zoo was during a flood in 2002.

MORE: Gorilla Outsmart Poachers: Are the Apes Rising?