DUDLEY Zoo's much-loved orangutan Jorong has died, it has been announced.

The 25-year-old Bornean orangutan died earlier today in the presence of the zoo’s veterinary team and his keepers while undergoing treatment for a long-term illness, a statement from the zoo said.

A spokesperson from the Castle Hill attraction added: "All DZC staff are understandably devastated at the loss of the great ape who was also a hugely popular animal with visitors."

Jorong arrived in Dudley in 2008 from Dublin Zoo as part of a breeding programme for the critically endangered species.

As a breeding male he sired daughter, Sprout with resident female, Jazz in 2011.

The zoo confirmed a post mortem will be carried out in due course.