Like humans, gorillas tend to lose some of their youthful exuberance as they age. Perhaps it’s because of this that a video of a 380-pound Silverback gorilla named Zola dancing like no one’s watching has gone viral.
Zola lives in the South gorilla habitat at the Dallas Zoo. As you may have heard, temperatures are skyrocketing in the South as summer blazes on. Unlike the other gorillas in the exhibit, the 14-year-old gorilla loves water. Recently, he took advantage of a giant kiddie pool which was filled with a foot or two of water (gorillas can’t swim, so this is a “safe” amount).
After the zoo posted the video to its YouTube page last Tuesday, it was quickly “liked” and “shared” by millions of people. The footage shows Zola splashing, thrashing and having a good ol’ time in the plastic pool. Watching the video would cause anyone to reminisce about what it’s like to live in the moment and be in sheer fascination of the world.
Said Keith Zdrojewski, the Dallas Zoo’s mammal curator: “We’ve always known he likes water, but we weren’t expecting the full washing machine-style spin that we caught on camera. He also loves to splash and do this type of behavior in the rain.”
According to the curator, the pool isn’t just for fun, it also exists as an “enrichment item” since zoo life can be quite damaging to an animal’s psyche. Zdrojewski added, “Enrichment can take many forms; it can be an object such as a ball, a scent like an herb or perfume, visual stimulation such as a mirror, a change in an animal’s company or location, an activity like painting or training, introduction of a new food, or a challenging food presentation … the options are almost limitless! As keepers, we are constantly coming up with new and fresh ways to enrich our animals. And clearly the pool is a favorite for Zola!”
Though many disagree with the notion of keeping animals in cages for the sake of human entertainment, it is heartening to note that even Tara Stoinski, president and CEO and chief scientific officer of The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International, found the gorilla’s behavior to be entertaining and lighthearted.
“Gorillas often like to play in water or even use as a mirror to look at themselves,” she said. “The Dallas Zoo animal care staff have given Zola a great source of entertainment and he is having a wonderful time showing the very silly side of gorillas.” She added that it is clear the gorilla was enjoying himself, rather than displaying telltale signs of stress and/or boredom.
Watch the viral video below:
I am Luke Miller, content manager at Truth Theory and creator of Potential For Change. I like to blend psychology and spirituality to help you create more happiness in your life.Grab a copy of my free 33 Page Illustrated eBook- Psychology Meets Spirituality- Secrets To A Supercharged Life You Control Here