Is Oliver some kind of missing link or did someone have intercourse with a monkey? You laugh but…I’m serious. I saw this on TLC so you know it’s the real deal.
Oliver, born in 1958, was the touted “Humanzee”, due to his preference for walking upright and his unusually human facial expressions and features. Allegedly, Oliver came from Zaire and was acquired around the age of two by trainers Frank & Janet Berger. It was noted at that time that he had facial features more similar to that of a human than an ape, and that he was “habitually bipedal, never walking on his knuckles like other chimpanzees.” It was said that he enjoyed watching TV, drinking coffee and smoking cigars. He also used the toilet and mixed drinks.
Then things got weird. Janet Berger told the Discovery Channel that he was clearly attracted to human females rather than chimp females; when Oliver reached age 16, he tried repeatedly to mate with her (bow-chica-bow-wow). The other chimps avoided Oliver and he posed a physical threat to Janet, so she knew she had to get rid of him.
The next people who owned him reported similar strange behavior, and the other chimps not getting along with him. In 1998, Oliver was finally relocated to his forever home in a spacious and open-air cage in a non-profit animal sanctuary in Bexar County, Texas. There, extensive genetic testing was performed on him.
What was found out was that he had the normal chromosome count for a chimpanzee and all of the other testing resulted in the fact that he is indeed a chimp. The other tests were “inconclusive”. Their studies were published in the American Journal of Physical Anthropology.
It’s hard to find recent photos of Oliver, and as far as I know, he is still alive and well in Texas. Who knows what he’s up to these days? Maybe he’s taken up driving cars or playing baseball.
So, was it all a hoax all along? Or did somebody do it with a chimp?