Name: E.T. (when she came to IPPL, she was a tiny, practically hairless baby and looked just like you-know-who)
Born: 1984 (estimated)
Favorite food: Hard-boiled eggs.
Favorite activity: Doing her “gorilla walk” to intimidate neighboring females.
E.T. came to IPPL as an infant in 1984. She arrived with her parents, Blackie and Penny, from the Laboratory for Experimental Medicine and Surgery in Primates (LEMSIP) of the New York University Medical Center. (Her mother passed away in 2006, but Blackie is still alive and well here at IPPL.)
After she matured, she was paired with Donny, a long-time zoo gibbon who came to IPPL in 2001. She keeps to herself pretty much, and, like IPPL’s Dianne, spends a good deal of time doing natural female gibbon behaviors: sitting in the highest part of her outdoor enclosure and keeping an eye on her “territory.”
She has a special technique she uses to show her female neighbors that she is one tough cookie. She does this stiff-legged, hunched-over “gorilla walk” up and down the length of the aerial mesh runway that links her enclosure with her night quarters. Every now and again she’ll look over her shoulder to glare at her neighbor Erin. It’s a pretty eye-catching display, but Erin acts like she couldn’t care less.
When she’s not busy acting like a toughie, she gets along well with Donny and enjoys simple pleasures like cracking hard-boiled eggs on the bars of her enclosure to peel them.
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