24 Aug 2012

Silverback gorillas coming to Canterbury wildlife park

4:28 pm on 24 August 2012

A wildlife park in Canterbury is going to be the first in New Zealand to house an endangered silverback gorilla.

The Orana wildlife park is working to raise more than $2 million to get three of the gorillas from Taronga Park Zoo in Sydney.

Orana chief executive Lynn Anderson says the money will go towards upgrading the grounds with a large enclosure, which will be kept at a constant temperature of 24 degrees.

Ms Anderson says the park has raised $800,000 so far, and is hoping to have the gorillas before 2015. She says Orana hopes to start a breeding programme with them.