Kisumu arrived at Prague Zoo last September. This week he entered the outdoor enclosure of the Reserve Dja for the very first time. Photo by Miroslav Bobek, Prague Zoo

For the group of gorillas in the Dja Reserve, the outdoor enclosure has reopened after the winter break.
The Kisumu male and the daughter of the famous Prague gorilla Moji Duni, whose pregnancy was confirmed last week, took a look at the outdoor part of the exhibition for the first time.
“The Dja reservation, which was opened last September, is entering its first main season, and the gorillas can finally go outside after the cold spring,” says the director of the Prague Zoo, Miroslav Bobek. “There is a completely different view of gorillas grazing on fresh grass. Along the paddock, which is over 2,500 square meters, there is an equally generous auditorium. I know of visitors who spend almost the whole day there watching the gorillas,” he adds, adding that the African atmosphere there is also enhanced by the giraffes, zebras and antelopes that are within sight. And what did the gorillas’ first steps out of the pavilion look like? Gorillas are conservative primates, so it is not surprising that the three females Kamba, Shinda and Kijivu, who are already familiar with the enclosure from last summer, were the first to confidently enter the enclosure. Seven year old Ajabu didn’t hold back either as he kept checking on Kisuma and Duni who were noticeably more reserved.

Shinda is a great lover of food, which makes her very popular with visitors. Seven-year-old Ajabu is her only son and is currently a Benjamin in the gorilla group. Photo by Oliver Le Que, Prague Zoo

“After her mother, Moje, Duni is very intelligent and inquisitive, so she showed more courage than Kisumu even when entering the large paddock. He first looked at everything from the door and returned to the indoor exhibit several times before making up his mind completely,” explains head primate keeper Martin Vojáček. “I’m sure he’ll get used to it soon. Perhaps even for the giraffes, who are watching the events in the enclosure through the fence.”

Kisumu got up the courage after about half an hour and explored the outdoor enclosure with the others. In the coming days, he will still get used to the generous exposure.

The breeding group of lowland gorillas in the Dja Reserve consists of the dominant male Kisumu and the female Duni – the daughter of the famous Prague gorilla Moji, who was the first cub of this species born in Czech and Slovak zoos. Then two half-sisters: female Shinda with her son Ajabu and female Kijivu – My mother and Duna’s grandmother. The nester of the group is the more than fifty-year-old Kamba, who is the only one who comes from the wild, as she was deprived of the group in her youth by poachers.

Photo by Oliver Le Que, Prague Zoo