BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — The Birmingham Zoo announced that its 41-year-old orangutan, named Oliver, is recovering after having surgery to remove a testicular tumor.
Members of the zoo’s Animal Care team noticed swelling between Oliver’s legs and an ultrasound was done which revealed a tumor.
This is not the first medical scare Oliver has had. Back in 2017, the ape was given a cardiac monitor implant after he was diagnosed with heart disease two years earlier and later developed an irregular heartbeat. And due to his heart disease, putting Oliver under anesthesia posed a risk.
Birmingham Zoo officials contacted the Veterinary Specialists of Birmingham who sent two surgeons that were tasked with removing the tumor while the zoo’s veterinary team focused on the anesthesia.
The tumor was extracted and later determined to be benign. Oliver is now recovering at the zoo.
For the past 35 years, Oliver has been a resident at the Birmingham Zoo. He was born at the San Diego Zoo in 1980 and roughly seven years later, he was sent to Birmingham to help raise the endangered population.
Oliver is the second-oldest male Sumatran orangutan living in a North American zoo. He currently shares an enclosure with the zoo’s female orangutan, Lipz, and their 10-year-old daughter, Nairi.