Gladys Porter Zoo Western lowland gorilla dies
BROWNSVILLE, TEXAS (KVEO NEWSCENTER 23) — The Gladys Porter Zoo is reporting the sudden death of Moja, a 29 year-old Western lowland gorilla, in his quarters on Monday, April 15.
The keeper was stunned of Moja's sudden death since he had spotted the gorilla playfully pounding his chest and hooting at Lamydoc, the Zoo’s gorilla family patriarch.
“Moja was a trim, fit animal – the perfect picture of a magnificent silverback male,” said Dr. Patrick Burchfield, the Zoo’s Executive Director. “He was both gentle and caring towards the members of his family.”
Moja was diagnosed with heart disease, the most common cause of death in captive male gorillas and placed on medication.
Moja was born on March 4, 1984 at Zoo Miami and was transferred to the Gladys Porter Zoo on breeding loan July 3, 1997. He sired 13 offspring during his 16 years at the Gladys Porter Zoo, and will always be remembered by Zoo staff and visitors for his grandiose stature and calm disposition.