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Gorilla accidentally hangs himself at Prague Zoo

Tatu, a five-year-old gorilla at the Prague Zoo, accidentally hung himself on a climbing rope.
Gorilla accidentally hangs himself prague zoo july 2012Enlarge
Nine-week-old baby gorilla Tatu lying in the arms of his mother Kijivu at the gorilla enclosure of the zoo, August 7, 2007, in Prague. Tatu accidentally hung himself on climbing rope on July 27, 2012. (MICHAL CIZEK/AFP/Getty Images)

Tatu, the gorilla, was found dead on Friday after he accidentally hung himself with a climbing rope, according to zoo officials in Prague.

The Associated Press reported that the 5-year-old gorilla was found hanging with a rope around his neck in a sleeping room in the morning.

A spokesman for the zoo, Michal Stastny, said all attempts to revive the gorilla failed.

The zoo's employees could only reach the gorilla to attempt resuscitation after chasing off the other gorillas.

The zoo's director Miroslav Bobek said, "It's mainly the female Kamba, the oldest member of the herd, who stubbornly refused to quit Tatu," according to Agence France Presse.

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Zoo keeper Pavel Brandl said Kamba looked like she was trying to help Tatu, but it was "hard to say what exactly she was doing," according to the BBC.

Brandl said it was likely Tatu unbraided one of the climbing ropes and put a strand around his neck before hanging himself, the AP reported.

"It was an accident," Brandl said.

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Tatu was in the spotlight five years ago, when his birth was broadcast live on the internet, AFP reported.

"This is the most tragic event that has happened at the Prague zoo since a flood damaged a large section in August 2002," said Bobek, in a statement.

The floods in 2002 killed several animals including a gorilla named Pong, The Daily Telegraph noted. The Prague Zoo spearheads efforts to protect the endangered species.

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