Gorilla taken to hospital for jaw surgery

May 7, 2012 at 4:16 PM
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OMAHA, May 7 (UPI) -- A 432-pound silverback gorilla made a trip to the hospital to be treated for a broken jaw inflicted by another gorilla at the zoo in Omaha, Neb., officials say.

Officials at the Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium said they believe Motuba, a 28-year-old gorilla affectionately nicknamed "Tubby," suffered the injury Thursday evening at the hands of Tattoo, a 14-year-old gorilla, the Omaha World-Herald reported Monday.

Tubby was taken to the Nebraska Medical Center Saturday and became the third zoo animal in six years to be treated at the facility.

Dr. William Lydiatt, a head and neck surgeon and zoo volunteer who led Tubby's surgery team, said the procedure took about 30 minutes. He said the team removed the broken upper jaw fragment and three teeth.

Lydiatt said Tubby is expected to recover fully in two to three weeks.

Dr. Julie Napier, the zoo's senior veterinarian, said Tattoo has been temporarily separated from the rest of the gorillas. She said he is "a youngster feeling his oats."

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