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Zakayo, Uganda’s oldest Known Captive Chimpanzee dies at 54 years!

It was with deep sorrow and grief that Uganda Wildlife Conservation Fraternity lost Uganda’s oldest known chimpanzee, “Mzee” Zakayo on 26 th April 2018.
Very few people would actually think of some non-human primate as being champions or idols of conservation. At 54 years old, Zakayo’s name had been synonymous to chimpanzees at Uganda Wildlife Education Centre and Uganda in general. Zakayo was captured from Semliki National Park and later found his way to a new owner (expatriate) on 10th June, 1964 who claimed to have confiscated him from people who held him illegally. At 13 years, the expatriate surrendered him to Entebbe Zoo on 19th June 1976. He had become so aggressive to be kept as a pet. Chimpanzees never make good pets. At the time, one would have expected that he would have been sold abroad to; zoos or circus facilities that were at their peak in the 1960s and 1980s, but he was spared and lived his last 42 years at UWEC.

Preliminary findings suggest that he succumbed to chronic Gastroenteritis. Due to his old age, he was highly susceptible to opportunistic infections. Zakayo had become senile and given his past history.

We would like to thank all the people who have been associated with Uganda Wildlife Education Centre and its programs over the years to ensure that; the animals in distress and in need are looked after. Zakayo left behind 284 other animals at Uganda Wildlife Education Centre. #RIPZakayo

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