Archive for the ‘Enrichment’ Category

When the Trolls Align

Thursday, July 20th, 2017

Our amazing volunteers created this great display of trolls for the chimps! Some could find this terrifying, but others (like Foxie) find it completely delightful! When Foxie saw this display of dolls, she was beyond excited! Which would she choose first? Foxie was so thrilled that throughout the day I have found her playing alone with her trolls or getting the staff caregivers into a big game of troll toss and chase!


A beautiful line of trolls:

Foxie holding on to the pink doll in one hand and the orange with her foot:

Foxie spotted again with her troll:

The aftermath of deciding which troll to play with first:

Foxie staying hydrated after a big game of chase:

An odd relationship

Tuesday, July 18th, 2017

We’ve seen Foxie put her dolls in precarious places, just so she could rescue them. We’ve also seen her hug and groom them lovingly. There are moments in the day when she throws them up and catches them, or hits them with tools. There are also moments like this..

Moments with Jamie

Monday, July 17th, 2017

Jamie enjoyed a particularly relaxing moment this afternoon as she had Jake, one of the graduate students who is currently in training to be a volunteer caregiver, groom her back. She’s training him very well:

I’d like to share a story about Jamie from today that although we couldn’t get photos of, is too wonderful not to include you in. After lunch Jamie asked for her favorite pair of boots and began building a nest with them, which is pretty typical. When Kelsi and I walked down the human hallway of the chimp house awhile later we found her sound asleep and snuggled up with an empty boot box we’d given the chimps for enrichment. When Jamie saw us (because there’s no sneaking up on a chimpanzee), she immediately got excited and asked to go on a walk. Kelsi had put on another boot when suddenly Jamie grabbed the boot box and opened it up. Much to our surprise, she had placed her beloved pair of black boots inside just as if they were a new pair! Maybe you had to be there, but Kelsi and I looked at each other in amazement. It was incredibly endearing. Jamie promptly took the boots, ran upstairs to the loft area and tossed them over the top of the caging so that Kelsi could put them on for a walk and off they went. No matter how long we work with the chimps, they continue to amaze us every day.



Sundaze at the Sanctuary

Sunday, July 16th, 2017

Sundays are all about relaxation. At the Sanctuary, we want to make sure our residents feel comfortable, and trust me, today is all about comfort and relaxation. Check it out:

Burrito had another fun game with his scooter, but unfortunately, a wheel came off. Luckily, Burrito was completely content with his 3 wheeled scooter and now just gets to bring the wheel everywhere with him:

A few days ago J.B. shared some pictures of Annie wearing a waistband and today she is still rocking it! Annie is having a blast today foraging on the hill and grooming with friends, all while sporting the waistband:

Even the boss decided to take a break and relax on a platform in the front rooms. It is the perfect area to lay around and relax while still staying alert:



Just Scootin’

Thursday, July 13th, 2017

This morning while we cleaned, Burrito kept himself entertained by playing with a toy scooter that we just recently received from a supporter.

Vicky from Save the Chimps gave us the inspiration to try out the scooter at CSNW. If you haven’t done it yet, check out this amazing video that the Florida sanctuary posted.


Tuesday, July 11th, 2017

Mirrors (and front facing camera phones) are popular enrichment with the chimpanzees. This afternoon Jody took a moment to check up on her reflection (via caregiver cell phone) as she lounged in her nest.

Jamie’s style

Monday, July 10th, 2017

You may have read past blog posts in which we’ve shared that we have daily calendars with themes for the chimps’ daily enrichment. The themes are things like “blue” day, “tea party” day, or “clothing” day. We don’t assume the chimps are aware of the themes, but they definitely help the humans think out of the box and keep things fresh. And we love that the chimps then have the choice to engage with (or ignore) their enrichment exactly as their interest and curiosity dictates at any given time.

Yesterday’s theme was “troll scarves.” Jamie in particular loves these and chose to wear one to lunch today. She definitely knows what works for her. She is such a strikingly beautiful chimpanzee woman.

Sundays Are For The Girls

Sunday, July 9th, 2017

Today is a mild 85º. The perfect day for a forage and napping!


Negra enjoying a forage on the hill today:

Jamie nesting with one of her favorite boots:

Annie in the greenhouse enjoying the weather:

Free refills

Thursday, July 6th, 2017

The chimpanzees have access to water spigots at all times during the day, but sometimes they enjoy a refreshing drink straight from the hose. Jamie occasionally adds a personal twist to the caregiver interaction when she brings her own cup.

Drag Race

Friday, June 30th, 2017

Whenever we drive the Gator (our farm utility vehicle), Jamie excitedly challenges us to a drag race. Exercise, enrichment, and a nice little rest for the staff!