August 21, 2013 00:00 By Pongphon Sarnsamak The Nation
Lin Ping has long been regarded as China's panda ambassador and now Chiang Mai Zoo will soon be home to some new foreign ambassadors - two gorillas from Uganda.
The gorillas, a male and female and aged between three and five years olds, are gifts from the Ugandan government and will arrive at Chiang Mai Zoo before the end of this year, said Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation's director general Manopat Huamuangkaew.
“We are now preparing to build a new home for these two gorillas,” he said on Wednesday.
The gorillas have been given to the zoo following an agreement reached between the Thai and Ugandan governments during Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra’s official visit to the country last month.
Thailand has just one gorilla, which is resident at the private Pata zoo in Bangkok.
Manopat said he is concerned about the living conditions for the incoming apes, explaining that gorillas are social animals.
" We need to study how to improve the environment so that it is more friendly for these two gorillas," he added.
Manopat also expressed his concerns at the living conditions of the gorilla at the private zoo.
His concerns are apparently not without foundation, as actress Nathalie Davies recently posted several pictures of the gorilla in a cage with rusty bars.
Davies also has asked members of public to donate money so that 25yearold ape can be removed from zoo. " We will try our best to help you, poor gorilla. I believe it won't be long," she posted in her instagram.
Manopat said he has instructed officials to investigate the living conditions of an orangutan at Pata zoo.