Polo, the country’s only gorilla, listed as one of the world’s critically endangered species, died at the Mysore zoo (Sri Chamarajendra Zoological Gardens) Saturday night. The 41-year old Western Lowland Gorilla was suffering from old age ailments and was buried next to his old time friend Wali, a chimpanzee, who had died in the same zoo last year.
Polo had been suffering from respiratory problems. He had lost his appetite and was fed liquid food supplements. “For a specie whose lifespan averages upto 40, he was quite old and we could not risk tranquilizing him to make a detailed assessment of his health status,” Executive Director of the zoo, B P Ravi said.
Polo was born in 1973, and was taken by Leipzig Zoological Garden in Germany, where he was housed till 1992. Later, he was borrowed by Dublin Zoo in Ireland. Under the recommendation of the European Endangered Species Programme committee, Polo was brought to Mysore in 1995.