At CSNW, we follow the philosophy that the chimpanzees are in captivity not by choice, and we see it as our duty to let them live their lives out in the best possible way. Essentially, we see ourselves as servants. We clean their enclosures, we serve them their meals, and we play games that cater to what they like best. For instance, I heard Sarah had a box with trolls in it on her head the other day. Anything to make Foxie laugh! And last week, I heard that JB wore some cowgirl boots for Jamie.
On Monday I posted a photo of Jackie serving dinner to the chimps on our Facebook page. It made me realize that we don’t really post about their normal food service—when we post about food it is typically because of a big fun forage. Forages are more similar to how chimps would find food if they were in Africa, but we don’t do a forage for every meal mainly because we want to make sure everyone is getting enough food. Since they aren’t in the wild and aren’t able to continually forage, they depend completely on us to make sure they get their yummy fruits and veggies. Sometimes we make a prepared cooked dish, like oatmeal, rice, or pancakes. They love prepared meals but they are perfectly happy with just fresh produce which is the healthiest option anyway, so that is usually what they get.
For breakfast, we serve a fruit smoothie with ingredients that change daily but always include protein powder. We cut up a couple different fruits and also have a bowl full of nuts as an appetizer. They also get multi-vitamins, probiotics, and fiber at breakfast. Lunch is fresh veggies—usually about 3 or 4 veggies each. Dinner is either a prepared meal accompanied by a fruit and/or veggie, or more often just fresh produce. I like to do a mix of fruit and veggies at dinner, but it doesn’t really matter too much. We cut all the produce into pieces that fit nicely through the caging, and the chimps usually take the pieces to their hands or straight to their mouth. Smoothie and other drinks are served by pouring from a cup straight to their mouth. (This video shows a little bit of the breakfast routine.)
Below are some pictures of dinner tonight.
Negra getting pear to her mouth:
Annie getting pear to her hand:
Jamie getting orange to her mouth:
Missy getting onion to her hand:
Jamie getting banana to her mouth (and Missy enjoying hers in the background):
Foxie getting onion to her mouth: