Meet Michael


Michael came to The Gorilla Foundation from Vienna in 1976 at the age of 3, having been born in Cameroon, Africa. Although originally intended as Koko’s mate, it eventually became apparent that he and Koko had developed a sibling relationship instead. Always bright and curious, Michael learned over 20 signs during his first year with The Gorilla Foundation and developed a vocabulary of more than 600 signs by the time he reached adulthood. He was the only “talking” gorilla in the world besides Koko, his female counterpart. Unfortunately, Michael passed away suddenly on April 19, 2000. See Michael’s Memorial for details. Michael was a “great ape” in every sense, and he has left a legacy that will live on indefinitely. We at The Gorilla Foundation miss him dearly.