Zoo Atlanta orangutan is oldest of his species

ATLANTA -- Happy birthday, Alan! The Sumatran orangutan at Zoo Atlanta turns 43 this Saturday, May 3.

According to Zoo Atlanta, Alan is officially the oldest male Sumatran orangutan living in the North American population managed by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums' Orangutan Species Survival Plan. Orangutans are considered geriatric after age 35.

The zoo said Alan is known for his long hair, a fondness for shiny objects, and his long call -- a deep vocalization male orangutans use to impress females. Despite that distinct call, he has never fathered any baby orangutans.

Sumatran orangutans are critically endangered; experts believe fewer than 7,000 remain in the wild. Zoo Atlanta has 13 orangutans -- the largest collection in North America.


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