Ape Week: Rocky

Ape Week: Rocky
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Rocky is clever, playful, animated, inquisitive and agile.

Rocky is Hollywood veteran, and has rubbed elbows with celebrities.

If you were to call Rocky a camera hog, he wouldn't mind. He's used to being the center of attention. Rocky was raised in the entertainment industry, and loves people.

Rocky isn't full of himself; he just loves the camera, and knows how to put on a show.

“I like to say he has the best of both worlds, because he has a strong bond with people but he also has wonderful relationships with the other orangutans," said Jon Pilarski, the Area Manager of Primates.

How many other orangutans can say that in a past life they've posed with Fergie of the Black Eyed Peas?

"Anybody that has a camera, he's usually right there in your face wanting his picture taken,” Pilarski said. "He's going to be one of the faces of this exhibit and HE will make sure you don't miss him."

He's playful with the other orangutans, but is also intrigued by people.

If you snap a pic of Rocky, flip your camera around to show him. Pilarski says he wants to see himself.

“When you take that photo and you show it to him he recognizes himself in that photo. Orangutans do have self recognition, they understand what they look like and they understand what a mirror means," said Pilarski.

Rocky is very close with Knobi, and they have a strong bond.

Rocky did not live with other orangutans until he was three and a half years old and Knobi taught him how to behave with others.

"Rocky will continually track and watch as many people as he can when they are present in the public space. He is so curious about what you are wearing, your facial expressions, what are you doing. He can also be seen playing with all of the females orangutans. He really likes Nicky. Rocky also makes use of the fire hoses by swinging all over the place which he is still adding new maneuvers and different combinations every day," said Primates Keeper Lisa Goodwin.

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