Philadelphia Zoo Gorilla Walks Upright To Keep His Hands And Food Clean!


CCSS NAS-3 283 Words 2-Minute Listen
Louis the lowland western gorilla (Photo Credit: Philadelphia Zoo)

While gorillas are perfectly capable of walking on two legs, most take just a step or two before dropping on all fours. However, Louis, a 16-year-old male gorilla at the Philadelphia Zoo, is often seen taking longer strolls, especially when the ground is wet or he is holding a delicious snack or two.

According to a 2015 blog by the great ape’s keeper, “When caught out in a rainstorm, he'll run bipedally across the yard to seek cover, and when he accidentally steps in mud, he'll find a leaf or a paper bag and wipe his hand or foot off until they are clean again.” To help Louis in his desire to keep his hands clean, the zoo has created a bridge using fire hoses which allows the gorilla to avoid muddy puddles in his enclosure.

Louis the gorilla likes to walk on his two feet when given snacks (Photo Credit Philadelphia Zoo)

The six-foot-tall, 450-pound animal is among the largest and, according to officials, “probably the shyest” of all the zoo’s gorillas. Born in St. Louis, the western lowland gorilla has spent his entire life in captivity. Michael Stern, the zoo’s curator of primates and small mammals, believes his bipedal personality quirk is probably a result of spending his whole life around bipedal humans.

Endemic to the lowland swamps of Central Africa, the western lowland gorilla is the smallest of the four gorilla subspecies, which include the cross river gorilla, the mountain gorilla, and eastern lowland gorilla. Easily recognizable by their brownish coloration and streak of silver hair across the small of their backs and, in some cases, rump and thighs, the great apes are a critically endangered species, thanks to a drastic decline in population due to loss of habitat and illegal poaching.


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  • fornitegamer0
    fornitegamer0Thursday, January 7, 2021 at 7:37 am
    hahaha i live so close to that zoo to
    • goodgirlz
      goodgirlzFriday, January 22, 2021 at 8:08 am
      same i have actually been there
    • acornyo101
      acornyo101Wednesday, December 16, 2020 at 7:44 am
      Ahhh!!! It’s a robot! Run for ur lives!!!!
      • dudebot
        dudebotWednesday, December 9, 2020 at 11:41 am
        It's like a man in a realistic gorilla costume🦍
        • goodgirlz
          goodgirlzFriday, January 22, 2021 at 8:09 am
          I know right
        • orangehamster
          orangehamsterWednesday, September 16, 2020 at 10:13 am
          At 00:48, when the text says that he's walking like a human, maybe we're walking like him....
          • wolfieland
            wolfielandSunday, August 9, 2020 at 12:03 pm
            smart and funneh!
            • ultrajango
              ultrajangoMonday, June 1, 2020 at 7:12 am
              so smart
              • sugarsweet1245
                sugarsweet1245Monday, May 18, 2020 at 7:25 am
                • gilchey
                  gilcheyThursday, April 30, 2020 at 12:55 am
                  So clever
                  • panini07
                    panini07Friday, March 27, 2020 at 10:51 pm
                    So funny and smart
                    • slytherin_lover
                      slytherin_loverSaturday, February 22, 2020 at 4:55 pm
                      That gorilla is legit smarter than meh.