Thursday, February 19, 2009

Diversion to the Gorilla Bachelor Pad's Jabari

As with all my blogging, please note that what I have written below comes from my observations and public articles I've read or viewed, and not from the LA Zoo itself. My blogs are not affiliated with the Los Angeles Zoo. I am not an expert, only a quiet observer, and reader on great apes. LA Zoo is near my residence and has been a convenient and wonderful place for me to observe these wonderful creatures. I began observing them when I started walking at the LA Zoo for my health. (The zoo's beauty and life kept me motivated to keep walking.) The great apes grabbed my attention, and so I began researching outside articles and videos as I continued to observe these incredible animals. Thus, my blogs.

Because Jabari was full of fun for me today, I couldn't help but divert from the Campo Gorilla's Family Troop introductions to the Bachelor Pad.

Jabari is an adolescent Western Lowland Gorilla male who is filled with surprises. According to the studbook, Jabari was born November 4, 1997 at Disney's Animal Kingdom in Florida to father Gino (born in 1980 in Rotterdam and now located at the Disney Animal Park) and mother Hope (born September 7, 1983 in Chicago's Lincoln Park Zoo). Gino is a great Silverback and was in high demand for awhile. His parents were wild born Ernst who resides in Spain's Fuengirola Zoo and wild born Salome who died November 24, 1999 at the Givskud Zoo. Hope was born to father Koundu, born October 6, 1975 in Bekesbourne, son of wild born Kisoro, who died September 24, 1986 at the Denver Zoo and wild born mother Mouila who is located at the Howletts Zoo Park in England. Hope's mother was Kisuma, born November 10, 1976 in Chicago's Lincoln Park Zoo, and died September 2, 1993 at Lincoln Park Zoo. Kisuma's parents were wild born father Otto, who died June 23, 1988 at Lincoln Park Zoo, and wild born mother Mumbi, who died October 9, 1998 at Lincoln Park Zoo.

According to the Zoo bio at his exhibit, "Jabari is Swahili for "fearless." In fact, according to one account I read (see below), Jabari arrived at the zoo ready for action, while his big brother Hasani was quite fearful. He is still young and playful.

Anyway, I mainly wanted to share the following story from today about Jabari:

While watching Jabari, the keeper came out to the visitor opening to throw food into the bachelors' exhibit in hopes of luring Hasani from the back where he wished to stay today because of something more exciting happening back there than in the exhibit. It didn't work. The situation made adolescent Jabari quite excitable. He wanted his older half-brother out also. He saw the keeper stop throwing food from time to time in order to call Hasani.
So, Jabari would look back toward the door from where his brother was to enter the exhibit. Sometimes he'd stand and try to see Hasani, other times, Jabari would just look back. He'd pace a bit, sit on one side, then on the other side.

All of a sudden, he beat his chest as he jumped down into the dry moat.

He climbed back up, paced some more, and stood up to look for Hasani a time or two.

Then, he jumped up while beating his chest. Still nothing. So, more pacing,
more watching.
And, once again, Jabari jumped up as he beat his chest. Nothing.

Jabari was utterly frustrated. When his and the keeper's attempts to lure Hasani out of the back failed, Jabari sat down and grabbed his head in his utter frustration.
Then, he began to give his own sign language for the keeper to throw him more food ... possibly Hasani's half of the food.
Well ... Jabari got the food. :)


About Jabari at the AK:


  1. Hi, Micki...

    I loved your photos of Jabari... especially the one of him jumping right off the ground. Amazing action shot!

    I am a docent at the L.A. Zoo and I see you like the Zoo, gorillas, and animals in general. I am working with the Zoo on the Year of the Gorilla (YoG) 2009 campaign to raise awareness and funds for wild gorilla conservation (declared by the UN Environmental Programme's Convention on Migratory species). I was wondering if you might be interested in getting involved in some way -- perhaps just by attending one of our events (we're hosting some gorilla-related talks and activities throughout the year), and/or by helping with awareness/fundraising. If you are curious about the possibilities, please e-mail me at . You can see my Yahoo group for the YoG at and the official YoGo website at for more background information. Hope to hear from you some time. And keep up the great photography! : >

    Best regards,


  2. I know it's late, but
    Love this post
    Thanks for sharing the story with us!

    -random passerby