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Zoo forced to apologize over its controversial response to orangutan launching possum out of its tree house

Zoo forced to apologize over its controversial response to orangutan launching possum out of its tree house

Perth Zoo has apologized for their response to an orangutan hurling a possum out of its tree house

Perth Zoo have issued an apology to their earlier reaction to a video of one of their orangutans hurling a possum from the top of its treehouse.

If you've been hanging around on the internet recently, then you might already have seen the footage of a possum being launched from atop a orangutan's treehouse while zoo visitors look on in horror.

If not, it's right there in all its glory, proof both that possums can't fly and that orangutans can be heartless creatures at times.

Onlookers said they saw the orangutan throw the possum 'like a frisbee', while Perth Zoo confirmed that the hurled animal was actually in pretty good health for having been thrown out of the treehouse with some force.

The zoo said the possum was most likely trying to take 'advantage of the cosy warm orangutan nest during the cooler weather' and found an orangutan in no mood for a roommate.

Possums can't fly, but according to Perth Zoo they can survive this.

A spokesperson for Perth Zoo said possums were 'a very robust species', but they have since had to apologize after describing the possum as a 'pest'.

They had said 'it is impossible to eradicate all pests completely' and that 'sometimes the orangutans evict the odd possum themselves', which sparked a backlash.

People were outraged that the zoo had also described the orangutan engaging in a spot of possum hurling as 'nature playing out'.

One person said the comments were 'disgusting' while another wondered how a zoo that 'supposedly protects all living animals' could say such a thing.

A third said it was 'unbelievable' and claimed that the zoo 'needs more education on how to address a non-native harming a native'.

"Sorry mate, I thought possums could fly..."

Others weren't happy at the possum being described as a 'pest' and Perth Zoo has since issued an apology to clarify what they said about the possum before.

They said: "While they do pose a management challenge for us on site because of their large numbers, our outdoor environment, abundance of food and bedding, it is not appropriate to refer to them as a 'pest' in the same way we would consider introduced black rats as a pest.

"This was not our intent."

The common brushtail possum is a protected species in Australia, with the critters suffering from a loss of habitat over the years, even though they have shown a remarkable adaptability to survive in urban environments.

As for orangutans, they have further cemented their reputation as the bad boys of the zoo, especially after one was caught smoking in its enclosure last year.

Featured Image Credit: Reddit/user/j___---h

Topics: Animals, Australia