Let it snow!

December 13th, 2008 by Diana

Yesterday began Cle Elum’s first snow storm of the year. And, to be honest, the chimpanzees did not react to the first flakes. I was thinking, “oh no, what are we going to tell the blog readers! Everyone is anxious to know what the chimps think of snow and they have no reaction!” It snowed more overnight and of course we had the outdoor area closed off to keep it toasty warm in the building. I opened the door to the outdoor area about 11:00 this morning and to my delight and surprise there was food grunting – and lots of it, especially from Jody. Everyone except Burrito took a turn sitting in the doorway and gathering up snow to eat. Burrito hung back and watched – I’m not sure if he was apprehensive or if he just didn’t get what the fuss was about.

Anyway, here are some photos and a video of the Cle Elum Seven ladies’ first experience of snow. What a way to celebrate 6 months in sanctuary!

29 Responses to “Let it snow!”

  1. Carrie says:

    I got a great big warm belly laugh from these pictures! Thank you so much for sharing. I am happy that the Cle Elum Seven are finally having a holiday where they can be curious, playful and free from fear.

  2. Gayle says:

    The little ladies had their first “snowcones”!!!!! How great is that??? I’m so glad you were able to share this with us. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

  3. Jill says:

    Thank you Diana! At the enrichment goodie-making party today we were all talking about the snow and hoping you would post something and look, here it is :) It was so fun to come home and see these! I think Burrito just doesn’t get the fuss. He probably thinks its wiser to stay where its warm!

  4. Shelly C/Hidden Valley Lake, CA says:

    Bravo Diana…..this was fantastic footage of their first snow, I really enjoyed it, Burrito is like I was when I lived in So Dakota, staying as far away from the snow as I could…..

  5. Amy says:

    I love it! I love that each of them has her own technique for snow-eating. I particularly loved the very delicate and precise picking of the snow lol. And one of the troll dolls even got what might be her first experience of snow. :)

  6. Audrey says:

    Oh my gosh ~ this is so fun & so cute!!! I was laughing so much there were tears in my eyes! They are so smart to reach out and grab a bite, and then go back in where it’s warm!! I love this video!! :)

    There were a few snowflakes in the air on our side of the mountains on the way to the enrichment party today (Cindy actually had about 4 inches of snow at her house), so, like Jill said, we were talking at the party about how you must be getting snow there!! The enrichment party was so much fun, and there were lots of pictures taken to share with everyone. Thank you very much to Jeani & Cindy for organizing such a great get-together to make treats for the Cle Elum 7!! It was fantastic!!! We thought of everyone who wasn’t able to be there…you were there in spirit! :) Hopefully we will have another enrichment party soon!!

  7. Tamela says:

    Fantasic video! Thanks for standing out in the cold to get it! Someone should build them a snowman for enrichment, but they would probably eat him. lol

  8. Amy says:

    Or how about a snow troll doll? :)

  9. Cindy says:

    I’m coming with wool sox so they can play outside and catch snowflakes on their tongues!!!! The video was too great, kind of brings back the wonder of winter (some of us really do think it’s an awesome time!)! Was it Missy who was so delicate fingering the snow?

  10. Anna says:

    I’m wondering if some of the chimps *have* seen snow before? Maybe during their stints in the entertainment industry? They didn’t seem tentative or at all confused – it seems like they knew exactly what to do with it. :-)

    I loved the grumpy looks at the sky, like they’re thinking, “aw geez, where’s our blue sky?” LOL.

  11. Margaret and Karen says:

    Oh we love it love it love it! They think it is a great big food treat!! What little loved! Seems to me Burrito is always the tentative one and then when we sees the women interact with something new, then he gets into it and acts like it was his idea all along! Yes, we had a wonderful time at the enrichment party. A group of the BEST human people making goodies and treats for the BEST chimp people. The time went so fast and I know we all enjoyed it. I was cross with myself to find I had brought my camera with me and then found it was without a disk! So I am hoping someone will send on some of the photos. I have a feeling there are some good ones. Diana you might have to creep around in the snow and add some flavoring to their snow cones! Thank you SO much for posting. You were right on that we were all waiting to see and hear about it. :)

  12. Shelly C/Hidden Valley Lake, CA says:

    Well Cindy actualyy I did love snow when it first arrived in South Dakota, we are going to get snow here tomorrow but it will be gone in a day. but in South Dakota, it would be 65 below zero wind chill and the snow was so deep you could not get out of your house for a week at a time….so I used to be part of the some of us that think it is an awesome time, but was burnt out on it after living like that for 6 years! And I will love to see it here tomorrow as I live on top of a beautiful mountain overlooking the valley, but not in 65 below weather! Thank you!

  13. Shelly Knapp says:

    I laughed out loud watching the video – how FUN it THAT?!?! So CUTE!! I swear, the chimps never cease to amaze me. They make me feel like a kid again. The enrichment party today was a blast – so wonderful to be in such good company, doing such fun things for our beloved chimps. Wait until you see the whole car-load of goodies Cindy is bringing for them! Thanks so much, Jeani and Cindy, for organizing it – and to all who could come. Margaret, there should be some good photos on my camera, I’ll get them uploaded tomorrow :-) Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow………..

  14. Candace (Tyler, TX) says:

    Thanks to the person who shot the video, it’s greatly appreciated and thoroughly enjoyed. Anna, I agree with you I don’t think they were that surprised to see snow either. Maybe, just maybe, someone was kind enough at the Buckshire Lab and brought some snow in for them to see and taste.

  15. Theresa says:

    Diana,
    Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!! I have been so looking forward to their first snow and I was not disappointed. A morning laugh and warm feeling (not from coffee) is a great way to start the day! I adore the way a few of them stuffed their mouths full. I bet they would love real snow cones with fruit juice poured over them. Or grapes mixed with snow. Even if they just eat it plain the fluid is good for them.
    I love the way they all went back in where it was warm. What clever chimps they are! I look forward to seeing more snow play.
    Thank you again for a wonderful treat!!!

  16. Denice says:

    Did any of them venture past the door ledge?

  17. Edie says:

    I am not sure if PBS stations are showing this everywhere, but in my area (Michigan), the local PBS stations are airing ‘Chimpanzees: An Unnatural History’. This is part of the ‘Nature’ series, and shows an hour long segment regarding chimps who have been in the NASA space program, in biomedical research, and in entertainment. The airing time here is 8:00 pm EST. If you are interested, you may want to check your local PBS listings.

  18. Katie says:

    Funny it seems everybody could relate to their first snow. These pictures are a hoot. You know what is next? snow cones, bet you they would love them……… Do let us know when Burrito decides to check it out. I love all the different methods they use to get a mouth full. Wonderful pictures!!!

  19. Jeani Goodrich says:

    I agree with the comments above. It was so fun watching each of them in their own way venture out to try the snow. Diana, I’m not wondering about snow cones as much as wondering when you are going to show them how to make a snowball so they can have a snowball fight!!! Thank you for sharing the photos so quickly.
    The enrichment party was a blast. We got so much accomplished and had such a fun time while we were at it. Thank you to everyone who came. Yes I can’t wait to have another one. Valentine’s day is next isn’t it?
    I also forgot my camera so I would love copies, too.

  20. Isle Dance says:

    Oh! My! Gosh! I just adore this! I am so happy for them. It looks like they knew exactly what to do with it – eat and play! Watching them is just precious and I feel guilty for saying this, but always know you can never post too many photos/videos!!! :o)

  21. Wendy says:

    These photos are great!! wonder if they get brain freeze like we do!

  22. Audrey says:

    When I got to work this morning, some of my co-workers said they saw the chimps first snowstorm video on the news! Did anyone else see it?? I missed it & I can’t find anything about it on the website. They thought it was on Komo 4 in Seattle!! :) That’s so great!!!

  23. dee says:

    so odd yet wonderful to see chimps indigenous to Africa in the snow!

    looks like this snow event kept them occupied for a while!

    fabulous photos and video, thank you!

  24. Kathy Benson says:

    Audrey – I just saw it on KOMO about 10 minutes ago.

  25. Diana says:

    How was the quality on the tv? Here’s a link to Komo’s website post with the link to the video: http://www.komonews.com/weather/blog/36180849.html

  26. Kathy Benson says:

    It was good. It was nice to see it again. I think I watch it every day. I agree with some of the others, it looked like some of the chimps had seen snow before.

  27. Audrey says:

    I missed seeing it on the news again! Oh Well…….I am so happy that they had it on TV so more people can see the Cle Elum 7!! Diana ~ this is such a great video!! I love it and, like Kathy, have been watching it several times every day!! It is so sweet, and I’m glad they were excited about the snow! :) Thank you!!

  28. Kathy Benson says:

    KING showed the video this morning on the news a little after 7:00.

  29. Cindy says:

    Just in case you didn’t know this video is also featured on NW Cable News!

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