Sally the orangutan passes away at Denver Zoo

Posted at 8:01 AM, Jan 27, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-27 19:19:49-05

The Denver Zoo is mourning the death of a 48-year-old Sumatran orangutan named Sally.

Zoo officials said Tuesday that Sally had a history of fibroid growths in her abdomen that caused discomfort and constipation. Her condition had declined in the past few weeks, and veterinarians euthanized her Sunday.

Sally was born in 1967 at Cheyenne Mountain Zoo in Colorado Springs, went to the Albuquerque Biological Park and was moved to the Denver Zoo in 1996.

She was well known with the staff for her tidy habits, such as combing her beard and cleaning her enclosure with bubbles.

"Sally was the matriarch of our great apes and was a cherished member of our Zoo family for two decades,” said Denver Zoo Vice President for Animal Care Hollie Colahan. "She will be missed terribly."

 Sally also loved to paint on canvas and color the walls, floors, hardware and her own face with chalk.

The Denver Zoo is currently home to four other orangutans: adult males Robin and Bernas, adult female Nias and her 5-year-old daughter, Hesty.

The median life span of Sumatran orangutans in zoos is 28.2 years.


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