Archive for the ‘rest’ Category

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:

Negra’s nest

Friday, March 10th, 2017

The other night, while doing chimp counts during closing rounds, I climbed a ladder to look in the loft and found Negra building this magnificent nest.

There are a number of theories as to why chimpanzees build nests. Since most free-living chimpanzees build their nests high up in the trees at night, it’s possible that nest-building evolved to help protect chimpanzees from ground-dwelling predators or to avoid biting insects. There is also evidence to suggest that nests aid in thermoregulation. And these theories aren’t incompatible with the idea that chimpanzees also build nests because they are comfortable. Who doesn’t want a good night’s sleep?

At CSNW, we give out more than 70 clean blankets over the course of each day. If distributed evenly, that would be at least 10 per chimp – more than enough to make a comfortable nest, with some left over to use on top. But some of the Cle Elum Seven chimps, like Foxie, don’t really nest at all, while others, like Burrito, only use a few blankets. That leaves more for the master nest builders like Negra.

The chimps’ night nests are almost always made from blankets, but day nests are often made with other materials, such as bamboo, hay or straw, paper, cardboard, sand, fire hoses, and on at least one occasion, every single present given to the chimps for Christmas.

jody in sandbox

To Each Her Own

Tuesday, February 28th, 2017

One of the most important things we offer to the chimpanzees here at the sanctuary is the freedom of choice. We provide the ingredients for a happy, healthy life, and the chimps take what they want and leave what they don’t.

Blankets are one of those ingredients. We put out so many blankets each day that there are plenty for everyone who wants them. Surprisingly, though, not everyone does.

Most of the chimps use the blankets we offer to build big, soft nests. The process of building the nest is just as important as the end result. They painstakingly wrap each blanket around their bodies or spread them out underneath them in just the right configuration. Sometimes they weave the blankets through or around other objects or structures.

This morning Jamie and Foxie were each “nesting” in their own way just a few feet from each other in the playroom, and the difference in their styles was apparent. They do have one thing in common: they like to have their favorite things nearby.

Foxie and a troll doll:

Jamie and a boot:

But that’s where the similarities end. Jamie likes to gather as many blankets as she can and twist and wrap them into a big, cushy circle.

Foxie, though, prefers the heated floor.

As much as it might make our own bones ache a little to see her lying on the bare floor, we appreciate that everyone has their own idea of comfort. Foxie makes her own choices, and we’ll always celebrate her in all her quirky glory.


Monday, November 21st, 2016

Annie enjoyed a moment of quiet this afternoon.

Time to Rest, Relax, Contemplate and Be Still

Sunday, November 13th, 2016

There’s something about rainy days that make contemplation, napping and relaxing seem like the perfect things to do.