Virunga National Park announced that the star gorilla passed away in late September.
Ndakasi, the mountain gorilla that became world-famous in 2019 after its selfie with a park ranger went viral, passed away last week aged 14, taking its last breath in the ranger's arm, Metro has reported citing the Virunga National Park. “Ndakasi took her final breath in the loving arms of her caretaker and lifelong friend Andre Bauma,”the park, located in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, said in a statement.
Bauma, who rescued the animal in 2007, said it was a “privilege” to support and care for “such a loving creature.” He said, “It was Ndakasi's sweet nature and intelligence that helped me to understand the connection between humans and great apes, and why we should everything in our power to protect them. I am proud to have called her my friend. I loved her like a child, and her helpful cheerful personality brought a smile to my face every time I interacted with her.”
The gorilla, who passed away after a prolonged illness, was clinging to the lifeless body of its mother when it was rescued by Bauma and a fellow ranger 14 years ago. Then aged just two months, it was shifted to the Senkwekwe Center in Virunga for rehabilitation with fellow gorilla Ndeze, who, like Ndakasi, was orphaned as well.
Ndakasi featured in the documentary “Virunga,” which showed individuals risking their lives to rescue the mountain gorillas, which are listed as “endangered” species. Virunga is one of the last parks trying to rescue this species but has to rely on donations by visitors and tourists.
Source: Hindustan Times