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Chimp Attack Victim In Critical Condition

Posted by: Loren Coleman on June 29th, 2012

There is a reason that humans need to fear encounters with apes, whether they be gorillas, chimps, or Bigfoot! Just “by coincidence,” today at 7 PM Eastern, MonsterQuest is rebroadcasting their episode, “Killer Chimps in America.”

An American researcher mauled by chimpanzees in South Africa has been identified as an anthropology graduate student studying at the University of Texas at San Antonio.

Andrew Oberle (pictured) was in critical condition Friday (June 29, 2012) after undergoing surgery near Johannesburg. Officials say the 26-year-old was giving a lecture Thursday at the Jane Goodall Institute Chimpanzee Eden when two chimpanzees grabbed his feet and pulled him under a fence.


Oberle relaxing at the chimp center, before the attack.

Oberle is a student at the University of Texas at San Antonio. The school said in a statement Friday that “our hearts go out to Andrew and his family.”

Officials in South Africa say Oberle had “multiple and severe bite wounds” and was dragged nearly a half-mile by the chimpanzees. Oberle suffered serious wounds, including bites, and reportedly lost an ear, and several fingers and toes in the attack. Witnesses said two male chimpanzees, called Mickey and Amadeus, were the attackers.


One of the chimps at the center (not an attacker).

About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013.


4 Responses to “Chimp Attack Victim In Critical Condition”

  1. windigo responds:

    My heart goes out to this young man, and his experience should serve as another example of the untamed ferocity of that the animal kingdom can produce. It also raises a couple of interesting questions that that should be addressed. One is how secure a fence is it when an adult male can be pulled underneath it? Second, and I believe this might prevent many an animal mauling in the future, why are all staff and researchers at exhibits such as this not required to carry a form of chemical deterrent (i.e. Oleoresin Capsicum)? It’s non-lethal and, I can tell you from experience, an excellent means of discouraging an attack from a large animal. It may not be the answer in all cases, but it still presents an option worth having access to.

  2. Jonathan Poulsen responds:

    Also, I heard that his passion for chimpanzees dates back to the 7th grade. Poor guy, I wonder if this has changed his views towards primatology and his willingness to partake in field research?

  3. peteyweestro responds:

    I feel for this guy and truly wish him the best and a speedy recovery. I also remember watching those same two chimps that attacked him on the Animal Planet show called Chimp Eden. The strange thing is that the one they called Mickey was actually raised as a human child for the first few years of its life. He was shaved down completely wore children’s clothes and ate with utensils at the dinner table with everyone else, he even took baths. Maybe that early experience scarred him for life and made him want revenge or something, they do say chimps in the wild exhibit gang type mentalities and behaviors. The other one named Amodeus was the alpha chimp in the adult enclosure so that was probably enough to make him show this poor guy who was boss. Chimps are surely not the cute little things like Cheetah a’la Tarzan fame!

  4. G. de La Hoya responds:

    Sucks to be him. Don’t mess with a caged animal no matter how large the cage. Receiving a degree from the School of Hard-Knocks can be detrimental to your well-being.



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