Tuesday 23 January 2018

Birthday for internet hit gorilla

Ambam's ability to walk like a man has made him an internet hit
Ambam's ability to walk like a man has made him an internet hit

A gorilla which became a viral video sensation when footage emerged of him walking like a human has celebrated his 25th birthday.

Online video of western lowland gorilla Ambam aping humans with his unusual habit of walking upright has been viewed nearly six million times since 2011.

Normally gorillas get around on all fours, but Ambam has perfected balancing on his two hind legs at Port Lympne wild animal park near Hythe, Kent.

Standing up has given Ambam a number of advantages including enabling him to look over obstacles and carry objects in his two free hands.

Park officials have observed that he sometimes walks upright when the ground is wet to keep his hands dry.

Ambam's ability to walk like a human has also been exhibited by his sister Tamba and her two-year-old son Kabale, a park spokesman said.

Today Ambam marked his quarter-century with a gluten-free cake containing carrots, grapes, bananas, potatoes, courgettes and oranges.

The cake was covered with yoghurt, coconut, apricots, pineapple and watermelon.

Lynsey Mclean, owner of M&B Bakehouse, which made the cake, said: "This is the second cake I have made for Ambam. As it's his 25th birthday today, I wanted it to be really special and he seemed to love it."

Phil Ridges, head of gorillas at Port Lympne, said all gorillas have the ability to stand upright to some degree but Ambam and his sister have a "particular talent" at standing and walking completely upright.

Press Association

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