Posts Tagged ‘chimpanzee’

Tug-o-War (Burrito-style)

Friday, July 22nd, 2016

Burrito and volunteer caregiver Whitney played a game of tug-o-war the other day.

The Loners

Thursday, July 21st, 2016

The Cle Elum Seven chimpanzees had lived together in the lab for a few years before they came to the sanctuary, so they were already an established group when we met them. Like any family, theirs contained a range of personalities. Some were dominant and some were submissive, some were serious and some were fun-loving, some were social and some were independent.

When the group first arrived at the sanctuary eight years ago, Jody and Negra kept to themselves pretty consistently. They would show up to meals, but that was about the only group activity they showed any interest in. For most of the day, they would each find a quiet spot, make a nest, and enjoy their solitude.

We love that the chimps have the freedom to make their own choices, so we were glad that Negra and Jody were spending their days in the ways that made them happy. Still, as we watched some of the other chimps find joy and comfort in companionship, we couldn’t help but wish that Jody and Negra would open themselves up to this experience.

Fast forward eight years: Today we know a Jody and a Negra who still appreciate their alone time, but who also regularly seek out soothing grooming sessions or gentle play sessions with their friends. They remain fundamentally the same people we met years ago, but now their worlds are just a little bigger.





Today is in memory of Kevin Clark

Thursday, July 21st, 2016

Today was sponsored by Shelley Winfrey in memory of her brother, Kevin Clark. Shelley is a long-time friend to the chimps and humans here at the sanctuary and generously sponsors this day each year in Kevin’s honor. She shared this message about today:

“For my brother, who passed away…he would have loved the chimps!”

Shelley, thank you so much holding the chimpanzees in your heart as you remember your brother today. We are so touched that you would think of them in such a meaningful way. We are happy to honor Kevin here today and all of us are thinking of you. We hope you have a day filled with good memories and the comfort, love, and peace that you help provide the chimpanzees.

Shelley’s handsome pal, Burrito:





One of each, please

Saturday, July 16th, 2016

Jody wins today’s lunch forage

Jody carrying cattail

Farmer Jo


Jody with forage haul


Jody close-up forage queen








Friday, July 15th, 2016

Burrito is probably not the smartest member of his group and he’s surely not the most dominant. But whatever he lacks in brains and brawn, he more than makes up for in charm.



Is this the same guy that spit water in my ear just hours ago and picked fights with his group mates all morning? Couldn’t be. Just look at him.



Jamie and the crow’s nest

Wednesday, July 13th, 2016

The chimpanzees continue to spend time playing on/in/and around their newest structure, “Twister.” Jamie loves to investigate the happenings of the neighborhood and finds the vantage from the crow’s nest to be the perfect spot to keep tabs on the locals. She is always interested in whatever is going on at the neighboring ranches (after all it is her job), but she seems particularly vigilant since the recent brush fire she alerted us to.

It may just be a coincidence or she may just be really loving what a great view she has, but Jamie’s been rushing out and climbing up to her lookout in the mornings and loves to spend time up there as a stopping point during her evening walks with her caregivers as well. Whatever the reason, we are so grateful she has one more tower from which to be Queen of the Hill. I kind of feel like she needs a Jolly Roger flag up there.





Joy in the Afternoon

Monday, July 11th, 2016

If you’re having a bad day, this video will help. If you’re having a good day, it’s about to get even better.

The Queen on High Alert

Saturday, July 9th, 2016

Today, Negra was the first on the hill for the forage. At one point, she heard or saw something that she wanted to investigate further, so she stood up bipedally. This is not a posture we see Negra adopting very often, so I was very pleased to have gotten photographs:

Negra standing

Negra standing 2

Negra standing and looking


She looks pretty innocent and sweet, doesn’t she?

Negra behind grass


Well, let’s not forget that she is a chimpanzee. Last week, before the drama of the fire, this sweet and innocent queen of the sanctuary caught and ate a hummingbird.

sweet Negra


I really like hummingbirds, and I don’t wish a violent end to any life, but, at the same time, I did experience a feeling somewhat related to pride… it’s not an easy task to catch a hummingbird, and it’s a pretty “chimpanzee thing” to do for a not-very-active, old grandma of a chimp who has lived in captivity almost her entire life.

Negra looking down


Boy, interrupting

Friday, July 8th, 2016

One of the many challenges we face each day in order to bring you all of these photos and videos…

Today is in memory of Ned and Noreen O’Flaherty

Friday, July 8th, 2016

This day of sanctuary is sponsored by Joan O’Flaherty in memory of her parents, Ned and Noreen O’Flaherty, on their anniversary.

“My parents loved animals and were very concerned about conservation of the environment. They would be pleased that their memory is honoured by a practical contribution to the care of┬áthe Cle Elum Seven.”
Joan, we are always honored that you choose to celebrate your parents and their memory each year by making a difference in the lives of the chimpanzees. This is such a compassionate way to honor their legacy and we so appreciate all that you do for the chimps in their name. We will be thinking of you and your family today and hope you are surrounded by the comfort and love you help provide for the chimpanzees in their sanctuary home.
Foxie and friends:
web Foxie walk YH troll in mouth dora on back IMG_7656