The Jane Goodall Institute's staff at the Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center in the Republic of Congo is working tirelessly to finish the preparation of three pristine islands in the Kouilou River for the transfer of more than 100 chimpanzees currently living in crowded conditions at JGI's Tchimpounga sanctuary.Giving these chimpanzees more room to roam is wonderful, but why is it so critically important that JGI move chimpanzees to these lush island sites? The answer to that question can be found in the story of Mambou, one of the chimpanzees waiting to be transferred to Tchimpounga’s new island sanctuary site.
Mambou arrived at Tchimpounga in 2009. When the staff at Tchimpounga first saw him as an infant chimpanzee, they were shocked by his condition. Mambou was emaciated, severely ill and in dire need of immediate intensive care. Too weak even to eat or drink on his own, Tchimpounga’s veterinary team had to feed little Mambou intravenously for three weeks.
Happily, Mambou has made an amazing recovery with the help of JGI’s caregivers and veterinarians. Now a strong, healthy chimpanzee who loves to play, Mambou has become one of the most popular chimpanzees in his group due to his charismatic and affectionate, loving personality. Once the islands are ready for his transfer, Mambou will soon be swinging through the canopy and playing with his friends in the forest.
Without Tchimpounga, this happy, playful chimpanzee would not have survived. This is why it is so important for us to finish the preparation of thse three island sanctuary sites. Not only will the chimpanzees who are transfered to the islands be able to live in a spacious, more natural environment, the expansion will ensure that Tchimpounga will always have room for rescued chimpanzes like Mambou.
The rainy season is here, and the weather at the Jane Goodall Institute’s Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center in the Republic of Congo has become extremely hot and humid. At the sanctuary, chimpanzees and their human caregivers are always trying to find ways to escape the sweltering heat.
One day Lemba, a chimpanzee who has taken on the role as “surrogate mother” to a number of infant chimpanzees at the sanctuary, had enough with the heat. After trying to cool off by hanging from a high tree branch, Lemba snuck away from the other chimpanzees and her caregivers.
Within her enclosure, walking around the food preparation building, she stopped near an outside water tap. Quietly, Lemba moved a nearby wheelbarrow so it sat under the tap’s spout, and turned on the water. Soon, Lemba was cooling off in her new pool! A few moments later, Zola, a young chimpanzee from Lemba’s group, came over to investigate and splash with Lemba.
Alerted by the sound of splashing water, Lemba’s caregiver Angel soon discovered what Lemba was up to. Lemba tried to escape, but accidentally tipped the wheelbarrow over and soaked everyone!
Lemba is a very intelligent chimpanzee who keeps her caretakers on their toes, and we are sure that it won’t be long before she thinks of another unique way to stay cool in the coming weeks.
The chimpanzee Wounda came to the Tchimpounga Sanctuary malnourished, sick, and afraid. But thanks to the expert care provided at Tchimpounga, and generous donors like you, Wounda overcame significant adversity and illness and was recently relocated to Tchindzoulou Island, one of three islands that are part of the newly expanded sanctuary. Dr. Jane Goodall was on hand to witness Wounda's emotional release, and now you can too.
On Tchindzoulou Island, Wounda will be able to climb trees, forage for food, and play with her chimpanzee friends that have already made the island their new home.
To watch the amazing video of Wounda's release onto Tchindzoulou Island, please click on the link below.