Kansas City zoo chimp beaten to death: How a newly arrived chimp ended up dying the result of antagonism directed at it from other long standing primates.
Video has been released capturing the moment a chimpanzee at Kansas City Zoo being savagely beaten to death by other primates.
The incident happened last Wednesday after the chimp fell from a tree in its enclosure while ‘skirmishing’ with some other chimps who then pummeled the animal moments after falling on the ground.
A report via the Kansas City Star told how Bahati, a 31-year-old male, was at the time climbing one of the three-acre enclosures trees when he tried to jump pass some other antagonistic primates only to fall 30-40 feet to the ground below.
From there the chimp is set on by as many as a dozen other chimps who make to surround the fallen chimp before launching a vicious attack.
Of note, prior to falling on the ground the chimp had moments earlier been chased up the tree by antagonistic chimps. What led to the antagonism wasn’t immediately clear.
The video, posted online by frequent zoo visitor Harry Miller, lasts about one minute. During the short clip that he shared online, (see below) children can be heard asking their parents what they were witnessing.
‘Look at the baby being like “don’t hit my friend”,’ a child is heard saying at the start of the footage, as a smaller chimp ran around the back of the group.
‘They’re biting him… why would they tackle the guy that fell,’ another child said in the video.
‘Mean monkeys… they should help him,’ the first child then said.
Told Miller via KWCH: ‘I heard the chimps making a racket even before I got to the enclosure… Several of them raced up one of the trees, it looked like they were fighting back and forth,’
Adding, ‘Of course these things happen in the wild and we don’t know about it, but when it’s there in a controlled environment it’s a bit different to observe.’
The Kansas City zoo has since released a video statement.
‘You’ve probably already heard that we had a tragic event that happened in our chimpanzee exhibit,’ Director of Zoological Operations Sean Putney said in the statement.
Adding, ‘One of our chimps, Bahati, was climbing a tree and as is the case with a lot of our chimpanzee mornings there was some skirmishing and fighting going on, which is a normal part of the chimp day.
‘But on this occasion, he was trying to jump by some of the other ones while he was up in the tree, grabbed a hold of a branch and fell down to the ground, causing some internal injuries, and he later died from those.
Bahati was born at the Sedgwick County Zoo on May 28, 1986. He made the move to the Kansas City Zoo from Tampa Lowry Park Zoo just a few months ago in February this year.
Reiterated zoo spokeswoman Kim Romary: ‘He fully joined the troop in the habitat this past February, and they have been together since without any major incidents. Unfortunately, chimpanzee interactions can change without any warning. Skirmishes are often a part of chimpanzee society and a means of maintaining the hierarchical structure within that society.’
Skirmishes and run-ins within hierarchical structures all too common and familiar amongst human beings since the dawn of time….