Zoo Chimpanzee Dies After Suffering Injuries in Fight with Other Primates at Facility

Rene, a 31-year-old chimpanzee, died following a fight among the Edinburgh Zoo's large chimp troop

<p>Edinburgh Zoo</p> Rene the chimpanzee, who died at the Edinburgh Zoo following a fight among the park

Edinburgh Zoo

Rene the chimpanzee, who died at the Edinburgh Zoo following a fight among the park's chimp troop

Rene, one of the Edinburgh Zoo's beloved primates, has died after sustaining injuries in a fight among the Scottish park's large chimpanzee troop.

According to the BBC, the 31-year-old chimpanzee died after suffering severe injuries in a fight among the Edinburgh Zoo's chimpanzee troop that erupted during the week of July 1. The fight left a second chimpanzee, named Qafzeh, with injuries. Keepers are working on slowly introducing Qafzeh to the other chimps at the zoo.

On July 8, the Edinburgh Zoo, run by the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, released a statement titled "News from Budongo Trail" about the "altercation" that led to Rene's Death. Budongo Trail is the name of the enclosure where the zoo's 15 chimpanzees reside.

"Chimp group dynamics are incredibly complex, and Rene, who was 31 years old, was part of a fight that broke out within the troop," the zoo wrote in its release, explaining that physical fights within the primate troop are a natural occurrence.

<p>Jane Barlow/PA Images via Getty</p> Entrance to the Edinburgh Zoo

Jane Barlow/PA Images via Getty

Entrance to the Edinburgh Zoo

Related: World's 'Rarest' Chimp Born at U.K. Zoo, Offering 'Hope' for 'Critically Endangered' Animal

"This type of behaviour occurs in the wild, especially around breeding time when females are in season and when males are challenging for dominance of the group," the Edinburgh Zoo added.

The European park also noted that the zoo's "expert keepers did everything they could to separate the fight and keep the rest of the troop safe, but sadly, Rene's injuries were severe."

According to the Jane Goodall Institute Canada, chimpanzees can be as aggressive and violent as humans.

"Chimpanzees have been found to more often partake in reactive aggression, though proactive aggression does occur in some groups, particularly in cases of intergroup aggression and warfare," per a post from the organization's website.

<p>Jeff J Mitchell/Getty</p> The Budongo Trail Chimpanzee enclosure at the Edinburgh Zoo in Scotland

Jeff J Mitchell/Getty

The Budongo Trail Chimpanzee enclosure at the Edinburgh Zoo in Scotland

The Edinburgh Zoo's release about Rene's death also included an update on Qafzeh.

"Qafzeh also sustained injuries and, after a surgical operation, is doing well and is gradually being reintroduced to the group," the zoo wrote.

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The zoo concluded its statement: "Rene was a huge personality and will be missed by those who cared for him."

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