Gorilla Gana, 11, was left shattered in her compound at the zoo in Muenster in northern Germany at the weekend when her three-month-old baby Claudio suddenly died.
Visitors wept as Gana held her lifeless child up in the air, vainly seeking to restore movement to his lolling head, his limp arms.
She put the baby on her back and walked around, stopping to look at him after a few paces to see if he had recovered.
"Claudio died in his mother’s arms - we think from some heart defect," said Joerg Adler, the zoo’s director.
"On Wednesday he gave the impression to keepers that he wasn’t feeling too well. On Friday he wasn’t eating or drinking properly and seemed to be growing weaker. We were keeping a close eye on him but suddenly, on Saturday morning, he died."
By Monday morning the zoo keepers were still unable to get to the body of Claudio, so fiercely is Gana guarding him.
"In the wild a gorilla mother can keep hold of a dead baby for weeks," added Herr Adler. "Gana doesn’t know it, but the whole of Germany is mourning with her. She is so sad right now."
shattered︰震驚的、心煩意亂的。例句︰She was shattered by the news of his death.（他去世的消息讓她很震驚。）
keep a close eye on︰密切注意。turn a blind eye不予理睬、坐視不管。例句︰The police has turned a blind eye to this problem,（警方對此問題一直坐視不管。）
keep hold of︰不放手、緊抓。例句︰Keep hold of the ropes,don’t let the dogs go. （抓緊繩子，不要讓狗狗跑掉了。）