In Defense of Animals
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4

Page 1 ⁄ Page 2 ⁄ Page 3 ⁄ Page 4


New Enclosure Finished

Wirba Timothy Maishu and his crew
 

Construction of our new 20-acre, forested, solar-powered electric enclosure with its large satellite cage system was finished on April 1, 2004. Constructing anything of this magnitude in the bush, on a very limited budget, is monumentally challenging. American volunteers Greg Rossell and Anita Phillips designed the electric enclosure and its solar power system and constructed it with the help of the local work force, while Cameroonian technician Wirba Timothy Maishu supervised his own crew for the satellite

Greg and Anita on the fence line

cage.


Including the clearing of the fenceline, construction
took more than a year; up to 40 chimpanzees can live in the enclosure.

 

Greg and Anita came to the project for the first time in March 2000. They have built all of the electric enclosures at the Sanaga-Yong Center. In addition to the satellite cage, Timothy has constructed several brick buildings at the Sanaga-Yong Center.

 

 

 

 


Transition has Ups and Downs

On April 1, 2004, Jacky’s group of ten chimpanzees was moved to the new 20-acre

Bikol (top), Cindy, Niete, Lilah

enclosure along with adult males Kiki and Chouki, who had not been fully integrated with the group. Amazingly, all of the adults, except Kiki, walked willingly into a small transport cage to be carried over to the new enclosure. That almost no anesthesia was required is an indication of the level of trust the residents have for Director Sheri Speede and their caregivers.

Kiki, who is extremely sweet and lovable, was very nervous and had to be anesthetized for the move. Sheri had hoped that with the move to the new enclosure, strange territory for everyone, Kiki and Chouki would make it into the larger group, but it was not to be. It became clear during the first week that the adults, even after four years of association in the old enclosure, were not showing the necessary affiliative behaviors. Kiki was terrified. Volunteer Agnes Souchal, who has a strong theoretical background in primate behavior, was a good advisor to Sheri during this period. Kiki and Chouki were relieved to go back to the old five-acre enclosure. There they will be given the opportunity to integrate with a group of juveniles in the near future.

Later in April and in early May, eight juveniles from the nursery were successfully integrated into Jacky’s group. During this process, Jacky played the role of alpha male perfectly, watching carefully to assure that older juveniles were gentle with the younger newcomers. In September, eight more young juveniles will be moved into Jacky’s group.


Sanaga-Yong Mourns the Loss of Two of its Own

Our beloved Njode, who arrived at the Sanaga-Yong Center in April 2000, the day after his mother was killed, died of pneumonia on October 24, 2003.
He had a high susceptibility to pneumonia, having had several bouts of near fatal illness during his years at the Center. Njode, 6 years old, died suddenly after a day when he appeared to be improving on antibiotics.

Sugar, a 30 year-old male with beautiful expressive eyes, died of meningitis on January 10, 2004.  Although he had arrived only recently at the Sanaga-Yong Center from Yaounde Zoo, Dr. Speede had known him since 1997.  She was with him during his seven day illness, and when all medication failed, she was with him at the end.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Volunteer Teaches Conservation in Local Classrooms
By Laure Bottollier-Lemallaz
Translated from French by Claudine Erlandson (Seattle, Washington)

Trained in France as a ethologist and professor of biology, I was enlisted by the NGO IDA-Africa as manager/educator of the Sanaga Yong Chimpanzee Rescue Center from

Laure entering forest with Boumba,
Aaron, Karmal and Jessica.

August 2003 to March 2004. In addition to helping with management of the Center, I was in charge of sensitizing the people to the disappearance of chimpanzees and other great apes.

The existence of sanctuaries for chimpanzees and/or gorillas is vital to help these victims of the bushmeat trade. Indeed, these sanctuaries provide chimpanzees and gorillas, who have been wounded physically and psychologically, a lifestyle which gives them a chance to recover their health and well being. But just as important are the actions of sensitization. To prevent sometimes avoids having to cure.

Intervening with the villagers, with the hunters as well as the consumers, to lower the mortality rate of these great apes and contribute to the survival of these endangered species was truly an exciting challenge. Because of socio-economic and socio-cultural realities of the country and more particularly East Cameroon, I favored the sensitization of schoolchildren, who will be the future generation and decision makers in charge of the ways and customs of the region. In fact, it appeared to me that hunting and eating chimpanzees and gorillas are motivated more by local beliefs and customs than by their need for food. Furthermore, children are excellent vehicles to carry out information and in turn sensitize their parents, who are more difficult to reach.

During my two hour presentation in each class, I stressed that the number of births (one baby every 6 years) does not compensate the number of the deaths from hunting. This surprised the students as did the physical and behavioral resemblance of the chimpanzees to humans.

From the beginning of these sessions, my enthusiasm increased steadily. I was not only helping the cause of chimpanzees and gorillas. Thanks to donations of school material, I was giving the six-year-old children an opportunity to discover color crayons and to draw, ten-year-olds a support for their reading, and to older students a chance to think and debate about the future of human beings and their environment.

Saving chimpanzees will come through the education of the local people. I am very happy to have managed this task within the Sanaga Yong Center and to have had the chance to help these great apes. Even if taking care of orphan baby chimpanzees is an extraordinary experience, I'd rather by far have them happy with their family in the depths of the forest.

"Laure gave a total of 35 presentations in six schools in the region of the Sanaga-Yong Center. She also created a brochure for children, “The Story of Simon,” which is very popular with kids of all ages, and created attractive, informative new displays for our on-site Education Center. We appreciate her contribution to conservation of Cameroon’s great apes.

"Laure gave a total of 35 presentations in six schools in the region of the Sanaga-Yong Center. She also created a brochure for children, “The Story of Simon,” which is very popular with kids of all ages, and created attractive, informative new displays for our on-site Education Center. We appreciate her contribution to conservation of Cameroon’s great apes.

Sheri Speede, Director
Sanaga-Yong Chimpanzee Rescue Center and IDA-Africa"



Page 1 ⁄ Page 2 ⁄ Page 3 ⁄ Page 4

Website Design by Cevado