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Double Birthday Celebration

January 12, 2019 @ 10:30 am - 12:00 pm

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The Louisville Zoo will kick off the new year on Saturday, January 12 with two very special animal birthdays. Gather round and sing “Happy Birthday” as we celebrate Qannik the polar bear and western lowland gorilla Helen!

10:30 a.m., Gorilla Forest: Helen’s 61st birthday

Head down to Gorilla Forest and wish gorilla Helen a happy 61st birthday! This is an important birthday in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), the accrediting body for zoos in North America. Helen is the third oldest known gorilla in the world and the second oldest in the North American population. Helen was wild born so her birth date is estimated. The median age for Gorillas in managed systems is 38. In the remnant wild the average age is 35. Helen is in a gorilla group with 47-year-old Demba and is Kindi’s great-great-grandmother.

11:30 a.m., Glacier Run: Qannik’s 8th birthday

Watch as Qannik celebrates her 8th birthday with special birthday enrichment items. Qannik was rescued from the wild after being found on Alaska’s North Slope in 2011, separated from her mother and sibling. She is a great ambassador for her species and arctic conservation. Her exact birth date is unknown but officials from the USFWS assigned Jan. 10 as her birthday. Each year the Zoo celebrates on the Saturday closest to that date.

Click HERE to learn more about Qannik’s rescue, “Operation Snowflake”


January 12, 2019
10:30 am - 12:00 pm
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