Only Gorilla Nation can truly understand how much we love our adorable mascot, Gus. So while it may have surprised the rest of the world, it made perfect sense to us when PSU alumni and friends embraced an online contest to name a new baby gorilla at the Fort Worth Zoo.

Earlier this year, the zoo, seeking community input on the new gorilla’s name, conducted a poll on its social media accounts. Because “Gus” was one of the options, Pittsburg State shared the poll on its social media accounts and encouraged its followers to vote for “Gus.” The name won by a wide margin and the fact that Pitt State played a role in naming a Texas gorilla drew the attention of media across the Lone Star state.

Avery Elander, public relations manager for the Fort Worth Zoo, said the zoo’s staff enjoyed receiving so much feedback from the Pitt State community.

“It’s been wonderful to watch people in Fort Worth and beyond city limits get so excited about our baby gorilla,” Elander said.

“It was especially exciting to see students at Pittsburg State get so invested in a gorilla that is states away. Western lowland gorillas are critically endangered in the wild, and we hope that little Gus and PSU’s Gus can serve as ambassadors of their species.”

As a show of appreciation for the university’s role in helping the zoo name its new western lowland gorilla, the zoo sponsored Gus in the university’s name.

“Animal adoptions are one more way our guests get to experience and support the zoo,” Elander said. “All adoption money goes to the care and feeding of our animals, and in return the ‘parent’ receives great information about the animal.
PSU President Steve Scott said he and the entire Pitt State community are proud to “adopt” baby Gus.

“Adopting baby Gus in the university’s name is an incredible gesture by the Fort Worth Zoo,” Scott said. “It was so much fun watching our social media community get involved with the naming campaign and show its overwhelming support for the Gus name. We, of course, are very proud of our own Gus Gorilla, and now we also wrap our arms around the newest Gus gorilla in Fort Worth.”