Happy birthday Ramon! Blackpool Zoo orangutan turns 21 today

Ramon - picture by Blackpool Zoo
Ramon - picture by Blackpool Zoo
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The proud leader of Blackpool Zoo's orangutan tribe is celebrating a milestone birthday.

Ramon the Bornean orangutan, who lives at the zoo's Orangutan Outlook, turned 21-years-old today, and tucked in to a special birthday lunch.

Ramon with his birthday present

Ramon with his birthday present

Charlotte Pennie, section head of primates at Blackpool Zoo, said: “I know I can speak on behalf of all the keepers and staff in wishing Ramon a very happy birthday.

“As a special treat we gave him a gift box containing some of his favourite foods including fruit, rice and yogurt. Being the gent he is he even shared it with his friend Summer.

“He is one of the most photographed animals in Blackpool Zoo as he loves to sit as close as possible to his favourite window and watch the world go by.

“Visitors adore him as much as we do and we have already received hundreds of messages with well wishes for his big day!"

Ramon, who lives with with females, Cherie, Summer and Jingga, became the most senior member of the primate family following the death of matriarch Vicky, who died in January at the age of 34 following years of poor health.

He came to Blackpool in 2003 as a spritely but shy four-year-old. He had been abandoned by his mother as a baby, and was hand-reared by zookeepers at Leningrad Zoo, St Petersburg, Russia.

As a youngster he developed a talent for art, and has put his bold brushwork to good use over the years painting unqiue pictures to be auctioned off for animal-supporting charities.