[monkeywire] Female orangutan dies after male's attack

Josh Greenman joshg1973 at yahoo.com
Tue Dec 16 14:17:22 EST 2003


Orangutan dies after male's attack

TARA, a female orangutan from the Bojnice Zoo in the western Slovak town of the same name
died after a male orangutan, Momo, attacked her in an unexpected fit of aggression. 
The tragic incident took place in late November while the zoo's three orangutans were
playing. Unexpectedly, Momo pushed Tara, who then fell to the ground. She died from the
injuries five days later. 
Tara was eight years old and Momo one year younger. The zoo's administrators are
shattered. They thought Tara and Momo could perhaps become a pair and produce offspring. 
"This is a very sad event that none of us expected and none of us could have prevented
either," the head of the zoo's animal department, Peter Lupták, said to the Slovak daily
At Momo's age, orangutans go through a period of pubescence. In Momo's case, this time in
his life is marked by increased aggressiveness. 
Momo was brought to Bojnice from France this past spring. 
Currently, Momo has been put in a different cage to prevent him from attacking the third
orangutan - the female Nanga. It is possible that Momo will be castrated in the near
future so that he and Nanga can later live together in one compound without risking
another attack. 
According to the opinion of experts from the European zoo association, Momo's castration
can proceed. The association recently proposed to withdraw Momo from reproduction due to
the ape's failure to meet the required genetic criteria.

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