At CSNW, the day begins with breakfast in the greenhouse. This morning, graduate student Lisa observed Diana serving as part of her caregiver training.
Meals are often served directly, as Diana demonstrates in this video.
They can also be spread out as a forage, placed in food puzzles, or done in some combination of the above. Serving individually enables us to give medications, ensures that everyone gets their fair share, and allows us to pick up on slight changes in eating behavior that might indicate changes in their health.
The chimps are usually patient and cooperative during meals, though food-stealing does occur and fights do occasionally break out. Notice how the chimps change positions and try to get Diana’s attention to get more of their favorite foods – it takes a lot of practice to be able to remember who’s been served and how much!
At one point you will see Annie “crutch walk” in the greenhouse. Chimpanzees sometimes scoot around on extended arms with their butts and legs still in a seated position. It’s an efficient way to get around if you’re not going far!
After breakfast, the chimps take to Young’s Hill and look forward to exploring, playing, grooming, and many more meals and snacks to come.