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There’s a New Ape In Town: Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo Welcomes Male Bornean Orangutan

by User Not Found | Jul 12, 2013
Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo has welcomed the arrival of an adult male Bornean orangutan named “Goyang” pronounced GO-young). The 14-year-old great ape arrived last month from Pittsburgh Zoo to be the dominant male of the Zoo’s orangutan group. After a series of introductions to the Zoo’s female orangutans, zookeepers began the process of acclimating him to the outdoor habitat.

TAMPA, Fla. (July 12, 2013) — Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo has welcomed the arrival of an adult male Bornean orangutan named “Goyang” pronounced GO-young). The 14-year-old great ape arrived last month from Pittsburgh Zoo to be the dominant male of the Zoo’s orangutan group. After a series of introductions to the Zoo’s female orangutans, zookeepers began the process of acclimating him to the outdoor habitat. Goyang previously lived in a geodesic biodome (ecosystem replica in a climate controlled environment), and thus had not experienced elements like the hot Florida sun, rain, wind or thunder. He has adapted well, at his own pace. The large but reserved male has been paired with the Zoo’s adult females on recommendation of the Bornean Orangutan Species Survival Plan (SSP), a program of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) designed to support the conservation of select wildlife species at risk of extinction. There are a total of 82 Bornean orangutans in 24 AZA-accredited institutions in North America.

Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo is currently home to five ornean orangutans including the new male oyang, adult female “Josie” with juvenile daughter “Hadiah,” and adult female “Dee Dee” with juvenile daughter “RanDee”.

Native to Malaysia and Indonesia, the longhaired red great apes can be found on the islands of Borneo and Sumatra. Orangutan (pronounced oran-gu-tan with no “g” on the end is a Malay word that means “man of the forest.” The species is considered endangered in the wild due to rapidly expanding palm oil plantations and habitat loss in South East Asia. According to Orangutan Foundation International, both Sumatran and Bornean orangutans could become extinct in the wild as biologically viable populations within ten to twenty years.

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Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo is operated by the Lowry Park Zoological Society, an independent 501(c)(3) charitable organization committed to excellence in education, conservation and research. The Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), and is featured among the “Top 25 Zoos in the U.S” by TripAdvisor (2015) and “10 Best Zoos in the U.S.” by Trekaroo (2015). The Zoo is located at 1101 W. Sligh Avenue in Tampa, one mile west of I-275 (exit 48) and is open seven days a week, from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. 

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