Today was Ricky’s 31st birthday! Ricky is a marvelous mom! A true matriarch of her family. She has been living at the GCC for 23 years. She raised six offspring with her partner, Vok. Three offspring (Canter, Pepper, and Dennis) still live in the family unit. Ricky is a kind, loving mother who let her offspring nurse longer than any other mother. We just recently celebrated their first grandson born at the Nashville Zoo from their son, St. Paddy.
Last year, Ricky was diagnosed with Spindle Cell Sarcoma, a malignant tumor on her left foot. She patiently received radiation treatment and went through surgery as an effort to stop the cancer from spreading to other parts of her body.
Sadly, in July of this year, we noticed that her energy level and her appetite had decreased. We took her to the hospital and found that her cancer had metastasized to her liver and her left kidney.
Unfortunately, there is no good treatment for Ricky's cancer at this point. We are keeping her comfortable, and monitoring her for any sign of pain or discomfort. She is with her family and still that matriarch. Her family loves to gather around her to groom her. She still cuddles up with her youngest son, Dennis, every night, and in the mornings she sings her duet song with Vok.
For her birthday we made a fruit salad in a large watermelon bowl which the whole family enjoyed. We love Ricky, and are dedicated to keeping her pain-free and comfortable as long as possible. For those of you who know her, we share your sadness and wish her well in her journey. #northernwhitecheekedgibbon #gibbon #ape #gibbonconservationcenter #criticallyendangered