Oct. 01, 2013
The Great Ape House staff sent 19-year-old female western lowland gorilla Kigali to the Sedgwick County Zoo in Wichita, Kansas on October 16. She was born here at the National Zoo to Mandara and Gus in 1994. She had received a breeding recommendation with a male at Sedgwick from the Gorilla Species Survival Plan. One of the National Zoo's primate keepers, Amanda Bania, accompanied Kigali during her shipment, and stayed at Sedgwick for several days to help acclimate her to her new surroundings. Amanda reports that Kigali is adjusting well to her new keepers, and even though it will still be several weeks before she is physically introduced to any other gorillas, she is also showing interest from afar in the male she is to be paired with. Her keepers are sad to see her leave, but since she is related to all of the male gorillas at National Zoo, this move will give her the opportunity to become a mother and contribute to the genetics of the captive gorilla population.