Europe's oldest gorilla celebrates 60th birthday in Berlin

DPA/The Local
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Europe's oldest gorilla celebrates 60th birthday in Berlin
Photo: DPA

There is no older gorilla in Europe: on Thursday the Berlin zoo celebrated the birthday of Fatou the gorilla, thought to be 60 years old.


The exact date of Fatou's birthday isn't known because she wasn't born into captivity. 

Her journey to Berlin was a torturous one: a sailor brought back the small gorilla from West Africa, and paid a pub in Marseille with the small Fatou. The landlady then got in touch with the Berlin zoo and brought Fatou with her to Germany in 1959.

There, the zoo estimated her age to be about two years old. This makes Fatou one of two of the oldest gorillas in the world.

She shares the crown with a gorilla called Trudy, born in 1957, who is kept in a zoo in the US state of Arkansas. The two gorillas became the oldest in the world after the death of Colo in Ohio, US, in January of this year.

There won't be any birthday cake with candles for Fatou though. On the celebratory menu instead is pineapple and banana.

Fatou has a large extended family below her. Her grandchild, M'Penzi, still lives in Berlin today, and she even has two great-grandchildren who live in the Netherlands, according to Tagesspiegel.


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