Our efforts to integrate Willy B, Honey B, and Mave into the Cle Elum Seven family began yesterday by introducing them to Missy, Annie, and Jody. The day included a couple scrapes and bruises and a lot of frayed nerves (both humans and chimpanzees), but overall it was a success.
The first challenge was moving all the chimps to where they needed to be to make this work. Thankfully everyone cooperated. Burrito, Jamie, and Foxie are now living in the new Phase 1 building and Negra is in the Front Rooms of the old building awaiting her turn to be integrated. As they get to know each other better, the new group of six will live in the Playroom and Greenhouse.
Here’s what we’ve seen so far from the new folks: Willy B, while dominant, is a hands-off kind of guy, almost aloof. He doesn’t start fights but he doesn’t get involved in stopping them either. Jody, Missy, and Annie are doing their best to win him over but he is being coy. Honey B has a ton of sass…she is currently seeing how far she can push the other girls and she’s quite fearless. And Mave…I would never confess to having favorite chimps, of course, but it’s not playing favorites when someone is simply the best by all objective measures 🙂 Mave is confident, friendly, and reassuring – she is the perfect bridge between the two families.
We are going to see how this group does over the next couple of days, with the hope that they will become more interactive with one another. At this time they are spending more time with their old friends than with new ones, but that will change. And Annie and Honey B have some things to work out, which they will in due time. Negra is on deck to be integrated next, if all goes well, but nothing is set in stone. As we’ve said, we will do our best to be as prepared as possible, but the chimps will lead the way.