By Jenny Desmond
Chimpanzees eat a lot!
147 chimpanzees eat more than 1,250 pounds of food each day! Every day, Tchimpounga’s residents require 1,110 pounds of fruits and vegetables, 80 pounds of soya, 55 pounds of rice, 7 pounds of powdered milk, and at least one can of baby formula and cereal.
This week, caregivers at the Jane Goodall Institute’s Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center in the Republic of Congo introduced the infant chimpanzee group to the world of art. The fruits of their enrichment activity: unique paintings for JGI-USA’s fall online benefit auction, which is currently underway.
JGI Rescues Alex, A Young Orphaned Chimpanzee
On July 28, 2011, the Jane Goodall Institute’s (JGI) Debby Cox was shopping in Pointe Noire, Republic of the Congo, when she received a call about a baby chimpanzee who had been confiscated by authorities and brought to the local Ministry of Water and Forest. Debby picked up the chimpanzee and brought him immediately to JGI’s Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center.
Raising awareness is a powerful means
In 2011, after three years of planning and hard work, the Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) successfully secured the land necessary to expand the Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center (TCRC), JGI’s chimpanzee sanctuary in the Republic of the Congo. JGI intends to expand the sanctuary by building supplementary facilities on three islands in the nearby Kouilou River. The islands will offer the chimpanzees a much larger, natural setting where they can learn, grow and build social bonds in a secure environment.
Background / Issues:
Every year poachers in the Congo Basin kill thousands of chimpanzees as part of the illegal bushmeat trade. Typically, the hunters spare the lives of the smallest, confiscating them and selling them as pets despite laws forbidding such trade.
Through the hard work and determination of the Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) staff, and thanks to United States Fish and Wildlife Services (USFWS), the Congolese government and supporters like you, the expansion of the Tchimpounga Nature Reserve is a reality.
In the spring of 2011, the Congolese government ratified a decree to expand the Tchimpounga Nature Reserve (TNR) by 750 percent. JGI's Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center, the largest chimpanzee sanctuary in Africa, lies within the current boundaries of the TNR.
JGI staff braved waist-high waters while conducting surveys of the Tchimpounga Nature Reserve.
A recent behavioral study conducted by Duke University at two African great ape sanctuaries, including the Jane Goodall Institute’s Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center in the Republic of Congo, investigated how chimpanzees and bonobos make decisions when faced with different options. The study’s findings indicate that, similar to humans, the two species are more apt to gamble when they know the odds than when they do not.
If you did not know that bonobos are matriarchal and use sex to maintain harmony, you'll want to read this introduction to bonobos from Live Science and primatologist Brian Hare. He has done several studies at our sanctuary for orphaned chimpanzees, the Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center in the Republic of Congo.