Captive born baby chimps born at the sanctuary in 2021, were initially separated, from their mothers, from the main group, to ensure their safety and survival.
The integration or introduction of these two-captive born male chimpanzees commenced earlier this month.
The babies, Bolly and Billi’s son; were separated to allow them to develop and grow a little older and be able to differentiate between safe and dangerous situations.
They were isolated for about six months as they learned the necessary survival skills to live with a community.
The integration started on the 3rd of February and after two weeks all the females and three of the males had been introduced to the new babies.
The highlight of this phase of integration was the interest the females had in the two babies.
They basically ‘oohed’ and ‘ahhed’ in chimpanzee tongue, as they interacted with the babies under the very watchful eyes of their mothers.
Another indicator of how similar chimpanzees are to humans.
The other infant chimps like Tam-tam also created special bonds and made new playmates of the babies.
Tam-tam spends hours every morning and evening playing with the babies and finds Bolly and Billi’s son adorable.
Billi’s son is however relatively younger than Bolly and will not play for long before she retreats to her mother.
The levels of love among the adult females are seen as Ndyakira, Nagoti, Natasha, Kidogo, Kazahukire, Nakuu, Sally and Pasa consistently coax Bolly to play with them.
At the end of the month, the addition of other male chimps will be paused to enable the babies to bond more with the females.
The big males, including the Alpha male, Kisembo, will be introduced, once the females have bonded and can offer protection to the young ones.
We are very confident that with the integration of Bolly and Billi’s Son we’ll be a success.