New female gorilla at KC Zoo, perhaps for breeding

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — The assignment of a female gorilla to the Kansas City Zoo is raising hopes that the zoo will soon be authorized to start a breeding program.

Conservation officials who oversee the genetic distribution of gorillas in zoos sent the 25-year-old female, named Makari, from the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago to Kansas City. She went on exhibit Thursday, joining a troop of one male and two females.

Zoo director Randy Wisthoff says the male in the troop previously has not been ranked high for breeding, but that could change. Wishtoff says for now, all three females will remain on contraceptives.

The Kansas City Star reports (http://bit.ly/S72CFx) all of the zoo's gorillas are lowland gorillas, an endangered species.

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