December 14, 1977
9 feet from fingertip to fingertip
Lived Where: National Zoo, 1977;
Albuquerque Zoo, 1978-1980; National Zoo, 1980-2004; Great Ape Trust,
2004-2010; Indianapolis Zoo, 2010-present
intelligent, social leader, patient
Azy came to Indianapolis from the Great Ape Trust
in Des Moines, Iowa. He has all of the physical features that make him
an exceptionally attractive adult male orangutan. In addition to being
about twice as big as the females, he has long hair, cheek pads (also
called flanges), and a long beard. Azy is remarkably gentle with the
other orangutans and his human friends. He also maintains peace among
the females and intervenes if a fight occurs. Azy is an especially
positive role model for Rocky, since they share a wonderful and playful
Azy is eager to learn new tasks, especially those
that provide a mental challenge. Azy has extensive experience in
cognitive testing and has participated in studies of tool use, quantity
judgment, and counting. He has years of experience using touch-screen
computers to communicate via a symbol-based language.
Azy began this work at the National Zoo, where he lived at the Think
Tank exhibit and participated in the Orangutan Language Project which
started in 1995. Azy has spent 3 decades working with Dr. Rob Shumaker,
Vice President of Conservation and Life Sciences at the Indianapolis
Zoo. The two have formed a close relationship through the years and they
will continue to work with each other on language and cognitive research
activities at the Simon Skjodt International Orangutan Center.
Azy doesn't spend all of his day learning; he likes
his down time too! He enjoys opening wrapped boxes to find treats inside
and when he needs to rest, he covers himself with a sheet for a little
time alone. Food of all kind appeals to Azy, but his favorite snacks are
fruit, peanuts, and cooked onions.
Do you think you are like Azy?
Take the quiz to find out which
orangutan is most like you!