Shabani (gorilla)

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Shabani (Japanese: シャバーニ) is a male Western lowland gorilla, who was born at the Apenheul Primate Park in the Netherlands, raised in Australia, and currently resides at the Higashiyama Zoo in Nagoya, Japan.[1] He gained publicity in 2007 at Higashiyama Zoo when he was 10 years old by tightrope walking.[2]

He gained added fame in 2015, due to being considered 'handsome', 'sexy', 'photogenic',[3] and 'metrosexual'.[4] This led to coverage in news,[5][6][7][8] and his being featured on the season 2 premiere of the TV series Not Safe with Nikki Glaser.

His residence caused a notable increase in younger female attendance at his zoo.[9][10] There is a DVD film dedicated to him[11] and he became the mascot for a candy line.[12]

He was also used in a worker recruitment campaign by the city of Nagoya in January 2016.[13][14]


  1. ^ "Good-looking gorilla has crowds going gaga at Higashiyama Zoo". The Japan Times. Retrieved 12 June 2016. 
  2. ^ "Philippine Daily Inquirer – Google News Archive Search". Retrieved 9 June 2016. 
  3. ^ "Japanese women are going bananas after this ridiculously handsome gorilla". 29 June 2015. Retrieved 9 June 2016. 
  4. ^ "Shabani: The making of a metrosexual gorilla". BBC News. Retrieved 9 June 2016. 
  5. ^ ""Women flock Japan zoo to see 'hunky' gorilla"". New Straits Times. 26 June 2015. Archived from the original on 3 September 2015. 
  6. ^ "Shabani the gorilla is so handsome women visit the zoo just for him". Retrieved 9 June 2016. 
  7. ^ "This Is Apparently the World's Most Handsome Gorilla (and Women Are Flocking to the Zoo to See Him)". Retrieved 9 June 2016. 
  8. ^ "Women In Japan Are Freaking Out Over This 'Sexy' Gorilla Named Shabani". Retrieved 9 June 2016. 
  9. ^ "中日新聞 CHUNICHI Web のトップページに戻る" (in Japanese language). Retrieved 9 June 2016. 
  10. ^ "Zoo reports increase in visitors as Japan's women fall for this "handsome" gorilla【Photos】". RocketNews24. June 24, 2015. Retrieved June 9, 2016. 
  11. ^ "Japan's phenomenally handsome gorilla getting nationwide DVD release". 23 November 2015. Retrieved 9 June 2016. 
  12. ^ "Shabani the gorilla is so handsome he'll be appearing on sweets in Japan this Valentine's Day". 18 January 2016. Retrieved 9 June 2016. 
  13. ^ Hongo, Jun; Inada, Miho (23 February 2016). "To Recruit Human Workers, City in Japan Tries Gorilla Marketing". Retrieved 9 June 2016 – via Wall Street Journal. 
  14. ^ "Nagoya taps zoo gorilla Shabani's star power for city recruitment video". The Japan Times. January 12, 2016. Retrieved June 9, 2016.