A 430-pound anti-social gorilla who's spent 18 years at the Dallas Zoo will be moved to a South Carolina facility for a more solitary existence.
The Dallas Zoo on Monday announced the planned transfer of 23-year-old Patrick to the Riverbanks Zoo and Garden in Columbia, S.C.
Dallas Zoo officials for years tried to create social relationships for Patrick. His response to female gorillas ranged from indifference to aggression.
Zoo veterinarian Lynn Kramer says it's clear that Patrick prefers a solitary life.
The zoo says Patrick is extremely intelligent and uses tools remarkably well. He interacts well with zookeepers and the public, and often is the subject of zookeeper presentations about gorillas. He is gregarious and enjoys training sessions with keepers.
The zoo says more photos may well have been taken of Patrick than any other zoo resident since he likes to sit next to the habitat windows and interact with the public.
The Zoo will hold a "We'll Miss Ya, Patrick!" celebration on Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 28-29 with zoo admission just $5 for everyone three and older.
- Other special activities each day include:
- Mini-cupcakes for guests at 12:45 p.m. at the Gorilla Trail
- Special treat presentations for Patrick at 1 p.m.
- A 2:30 p.m. gorilla keeper presentation
- A going-away card to sign for Patrick and our staff
- Zoo fans are also being asked to share their favorite memories and photos of Patrick on the zoo’s Facebook and Instagram pages.
Dallas Zoo officials will now concentrate on working with other male gorillas in a species survival plan, which includes introducing its two newest male gorillas, Shana and Zola, to current male residents B’wenzi and Juba. The zoo says that will form the zoo’s largest bachelor troop.
After Patrick’s departure the six gorillas at the Dallas Zoo will be:
- Madge, born June 17, 1981, at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden.
- Shanta, Madge’s daughter, born Feb. 26, 1997, at Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden.
- B’wenzi, born June 11, 2002, at Toledo Zoological Gardens.
- Juba (lives with B’wenzi in a bachelor group), born Jan. 6, 2002, at Toledo Zoological Gardens.
- Shana, born Sept. 1, 2002, at the Bronx Zoo.
- Zola, half-brother to Shana, born Nov. 1, 2002, at the Bronx Zoo. (He’s the star of the “break-dancing gorilla” video on YouTube, which has been viewed more than 3 million times. He was really just playing in a puddle, but people enjoyed watching him after the Calgary Zoo staff set his moves to music.)
No move date was announced for Patrick, who was born in New York at the Bronx Zoo but due to maternal neglect was moved to the Toronto Zoo, then Texas.