Anaka, a Western Lowland Gorilla, has pink ᴘɪɢᴍᴇɴᴛation on her normally dark fingers. At first glance, the incredible close-up shot of her hand might have you mistake Anaka for a human hand with ᴠɪᴛɪʟɪɢᴏ, but it is actually the hand of this beautiful gorilla.
Photos of the primate were taken by the employees at the facility and shared to Facebook. And those shots caught the eyes of viewers who were naturally stunned to see how human-like a gorilla’s hands really are when stripped of their usual dark grey skin tone.
Anaka the gorilla lacks ᴘɪɢᴍᴇɴᴛation on a patch of her hand. Gorillas, like humans, have opposable thumbs, they do not have claws, unlike many animals. Rather, they have fingernails and toenails. Nails are used for opening and scraping things, cleaning, and scratching. Like all primates, they also have individualised fingerprints and toeprints. These unique and defining characteristics allow them to be used for identification purposes.
According to the zoo, Anaka’s skin colour is not a short-term condition or one that needs to be cured.
Some people were thinking Anaka has ᴠɪᴛɪʟɪɢᴏ, a long-term skin condition characterised by patches of the skin losing their ᴘɪɢᴍᴇɴᴛ. A curious visitor asked the zoo about Anaka’s condition and received a reply.
The zoo reportedly wrote back to the visitor, saying: “Well, her skin ᴘɪɢᴍᴇɴᴛ has always been like that and hasn’t changed over the years, so we think it’s just a cool birthmark.”
Despite Anaka being a gorilla, she has a personality that’s relatable to us humans, too. According to the Zoo Atlanta, she is “often barking at her mom and others for food and juice.” She can also be seen hitching a piggyback ride on her siblings. Does that sound like a little sister you know?