Outside of the sanctuary, there’s a lot going on right now.
Most of you are probably well aware of the uncertainty and trepidation surrounding COVID-19, and we have been altering our operations to ensure that this pandemic has no effect on the chimpanzees. If you’re wondering exactly how we are adjusting, I recommend reading this letter to our community that Diana sent out yesterday.
Obviously, we are doing our best to minimize the potential for pathogen transmission into the sanctuary while maximizing social distancing. Unlike many Washington state employers, however, we can’t just completely close down the office and have everybody work from home. Our staff needs to continue providing the chimpanzees with healthy meals, engaging activities, secure enclosures and clean surroundings, albeit now with a much smaller team of personnel than we are accustomed to. That’s okay, though. Our core team is pretty good at this caregiving stuff, and we don’t think the chimps have noticed that there are unprecedented measures being taken across the globe in response to a new and unusual coronavirus.
Today, I took some time after lunch to observe the chimpanzees as they foraged, relaxed, socialized and exercised. I also casually took some photographs to share with you all.
I always find that watching them go about their day is grounding and encouraging, and I am proud that we can continue to offer them a peaceful sanctuary home even in the strangest of times. Stay mindful, everyone.