Female Chimp Who Has Only Ever Lived With Humans Heads To Kenya To Learn To Be An Ape

This is the moment an abandoned female chimpanzee that has lived her life separated from other chimpanzees arrives in a sanctuary in Kenya after being transferred from an Iranian zoo.

Baran, a four-year-old chimp, was transferred to the Sweetwaters Chimpanzee Sanctuary in the Kenyan county of Laikipia last month over fears that growing up isolated from other chimpanzees was bad for her health.

The young chimpanzee was prematurely born, and her mother was unable to take care of her because of her sensitive condition.

As a result, vets took her from her mother and slowly nursed her to strength to the point where they felt she could be returned to her mother. But by then the mother no longer accepted the baby, and because she rejected her, the rest of the troop did as well.

It meant she had to be raised away from them in isolation, fed by hand by zoo vet Eman Memarian.

However, Memarian was concerned for the female chimp’s wellbeing because she no longer had anyone to associate with, and as a result, the zoo decided to transfer her to another animal park to help her physical and emotional development.

With the possibility of introducing her with her own troop no longer an option, they decided to link up with the specialists that have extensive experience in reintroducing chimps into family groups, and so they contacted the Kenyan chimp sanctuary, founded in 1993.

A spokesperson for Eram Zoo said: “Chimpanzees are social creatures who must live in their social groups to acquire the necessary skills for a healthy and natural social life.”

Parviz Ghandali, zoo director, said: “Although Eram Zoo was able to save Baran, it was decided that she needs to be transferred to the international chimpanzee care centre in Kenya because she can live better with necessary facilities and environment.”

A farewell party was held for the young chimp at the Iranian zoo before her journey to Kenya.

The event was attended by local animal welfare groups as well as representatives of the Iranian Embassy in Kenya and the Kenya Wildlife Service.

The chimp will be kept in quarantine for three months before joining the other animals at the sanctuary.

Credit: Ol Pejeta Conservancy, Dr Stephen Ngulu/Newsflash
A four-year-old female chimpanzee, named Baran, relocated from Eram zoo in Iran arrived in Sweetwaters Chimpanzee Sanctuary in Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya on 5th July 2021.

To find out more about the author, editor or agency that supplied this story – please click below.
Story By:  Ipek Acar, Sub-Editor: James King, Agency: Newsflash

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