Do you know Loundan’s story? Loundan is a wild female who chose, in August 2008, to freely integrate our group of adult chimps. In wild chimpanzees, young adult females generally leave their native group to migrate in another group. Doing so, consanguinity is avoided. We have several groups of wild chimpanzees around the sanctuary and we sometimes hear them and spot them.
We started to see this wild female in May 2008. She was often nesting next to Coco’s enclosure and we saw her every morning. And then, in August 2008, she took the courage to jump in the adult enclosure!
At the beginning, she was going out very regularly to eat and drink but she slowly got habituated to human presence (even if we tried – unsuccessfully – to chase her away!) and started to come into the cage with the rest of the group for the feedings. Today she is fully habituated to us but we can’t touch her! In December 2009, she gave birth to a baby girl, Balo, who sadly died of pneumonia last October. Balo was curious with humans but her mum didn’t let us touch her, so we couldn’t give her medicines…
Yesterday morning, Loundan came to take her breakfast carrying a tiny new-born on her belly! The team didn’t manage to see if it’s a boy or a girl but what a surprise!
The CCC has a contraception policy as we want to keep room for orphan chimpanzees who are in need. But Loundan’s case is a bit different as she is a wild chimp, we can’t touch her and she still goes out whenever she wants! But each birth of a new tiny chimpanzee in this world is a precious hope and we are sure the group is very happy to welcome a new member!
We will keep you posted as soon as we get more info on the baby!