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Koko: Gorilla who mastered sign language dies


Still Waters
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"Koko - the gorilla known for her extraordinary mastery of sign language, and as the primary ambassador for her endangered species - passed away yesterday [Wednesday] morning in her sleep at the age of 46," a Gorilla Foundation press release said.

"Koko touched the lives of millions as an ambassador for all gorillas and an icon for interspecies communication and empathy. She was beloved and will be deeply missed."

The gorilla, who was said to have an IQ of between 75 and 95, could understand 2,000 words of spoken English. The average IQ for humans on many tests is 100, and most people score somewhere between 85 and 115.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-44559261

:(

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Such sad news.

I remember watching the video of Koko being told of All Ball's death. It was heartbreaking.

What an amazing animal she was.

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She was quite remarkable.    :wub:

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Didn't Koko take the pic of herself that went on National Geographic's cover back in the day? 

I feel for Francine Patterson, she must be devastated. 

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Rest in peace Koko. I hope that you were happy in captivity and were never denied the joys of being a Gorilla and were never lonely.

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I bet she was the only Gorilla that threw up signs and smoked cigarettes :w00t:

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RIP. I wonder if 46 is venerable for a gorilla or not, though. I'd guess they die younger in the wild. Hopefully other apes/chimps will be taught sign language. I wouldn't want the experiments in inter-species communication to end.

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Oh.....sorry to hear. :(

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21 hours ago, Seti42 said:

RIP. I wonder if 46 is venerable for a gorilla or not, though. I'd guess they die younger in the wild. Hopefully other apes/chimps will be taught sign language. I wouldn't want the experiments in inter-species communication to end.

46 is quite old for a gorilla. In the wild they often live around 40 years. When they were first kept in captivity they often only lived a few years and died. As our knowledge about them grew, so did their life spans in captivity. 

Colo famously was the first gorilla born in captivity and the oldest gorilla in captivity (as of April of this year there are 2 other females gorillas in captivity thought to be 61 years old) when she died at the age of 60 here at the Columbus Zoo. Her grandson, Mac, (brother to Mosuba, the first gorilla twins born in captivity) still leads a troop here. He'll be 35 in september.

 

20170916_122041.jpg

Edited by Imaginarynumber1
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''She was beloved'' Did she had kids ? Did she got a glimpse of a real Gorilla life ? Was impressed and sad while looking at Koko.

Maybe she was beloved by human and at the same time more or less being imprisoned for life for scientific study...just sad for her and for us.

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I wonder why I find animals passing sad and people not so much.Hopefully her spirit goes back to the forrest.R.I.P  Koko.

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On 7/1/2018 at 11:28 AM, Jon the frog said:

''She was beloved'' Did she had kids ? Did she got a glimpse of a real Gorilla life ? Was impressed and sad while looking at Koko.

Maybe she was beloved by human and at the same time more or less being imprisoned for life for scientific study...just sad for her and for us.

I really don't know about that. 

She was beloved, treated well, learned more than any other gorilla, she even met Robin Williams! I honestly wonder if she had ever seen him on the TV and recognised him. 

Point is she had a unique rich life with people who loved and cared for her. Darwinism order is harsh, we don't like it or live by it, there's no reason to think a regular meal, a warm place to sleep and friendly presence around is not a bad option IMHO. We naturally lived outdoors too, but I wouldn't want to go back to that way of life. Koko was given much love and I think the people around her gave her a special gift with such a unique existence amongst her kind. If ones gives another the best life they can provide, I think that's a very special gift, its the sort of thing that makes life worth living. And I'm sure Kokos carers sleep well at night knowing that they gave her the best life they could. 

Rip Koko. You made the world a little more magical. 

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4 hours ago, psyche101 said:

I really don't know about that. 

She was beloved, treated well, learned more than any other gorilla, she even met Robin Williams! I honestly wonder if she had ever seen him on the TV and recognised him. 

Point is she had a unique rich life with people who loved and cared for her. Darwinism order is harsh, we don't like it or live by it, there's no reason to think a regular meal, a warm place to sleep and friendly presence around is not a bad option IMHO. We naturally lived outdoors too, but I wouldn't want to go back to that way of life. Koko was given much love and I think the people around her gave her a special gift with such a unique existence amongst her kind. If ones gives another the best life they can provide, I think that's a very special gift, its the sort of thing that makes life worth living. And I'm sure Kokos carers sleep well at night knowing that they gave her the best life they could. 

Rip Koko. You made the world a little more magical. 

Yeah she was fed, she had a good place to sleep, protection, toys and entertainment.  Did she live like a gorilla, no, did she helped human get a better view on another sentient being, yes. She was an experiment more or less and for that I find it a bit sad. Think about a kid that you put in a golden cage all his life to train him and observe him.

Sure that his caretaker was loving her. I worked in a conservation facility and I was a caretaker/animal trainer. It's far from always joy and pink like most people try to believe. Most mammals got their daily dose of antidepressant drug to keep them from hurting themselves or looking bad. Koko was well known and followed but she was not free. They have shown mostly the good days like people do on facebook .

She made the world a little more magical maybe but at the cost of her true life. It's why when looking at Koko I was impressed and sad.

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10 hours ago, Jon the frog said:

Yeah she was fed, she had a good place to sleep, protection, toys and entertainment.  Did she live like a gorilla, no, did she helped human get a better view on another sentient being, yes. She was an experiment more or less and for that I find it a bit sad. Think about a kid that you put in a golden cage all his life to train him and observe him.

Well I think it was a unique and marvellous opportunity. It seems a pretty good existance. Living like a gorilla means constantly hunting food  at mercy to the elements and predators. And we were probably just as much an experiment for Koko as she was with us. I see her life as a mutual experiment that enriched her life as well. Rather than a kid in a cage, I think this was a unique opportunity that benefited both. 

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Sure that his caretaker was loving her. I worked in a conservation facility and I was a caretaker/animal trainer. It's far from always joy and pink like most people try to believe. Most mammals got their daily dose of antidepressant drug to keep them from hurting themselves or looking bad. Koko was well known and followed but she was not free. They have shown mostly the good days like people do on facebook .

Maybe that's the case but it's not my experience here. I'm not an animal trainer but I have built enclosures for tigers and polar bears. They seem pretty active and rather threatening to me. 

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She made the world a little more magical maybe but at the cost of her true life. It's why when looking at Koko I was impressed and sad.

I'm just impressed. 

I don't see the big deal here. I'd rather kokos life than foraging on the side of a mountain. What exactly do you think she was missing by living a comfortable life? 

I think about my dog, she would really hate a natural life organised by Darwinian order. I doubt she would survive a week without me. 

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