Fauna Foundation Dr. Mary Lee Jensvold with Chimpanzee Tatu

Caregiver Interactions with Chimpanzees

A recent study was done to assess caregiver interactions with chimpanzees. Bianca De Filippis, a McGill intern and previous Fauna volunteer, worked with Lindsay Towns, also of Fauna, to analyze Fauna records on the chimpanzee-caregiver interactions and see how much time the chimps and caregivers spend together.

All Fauna caregivers record the amount of time that they spend interacting with each chimpanzee. The objective of this Fauna protocol is to ensure that the chimpanzees have adequate social enrichment. The graph below charts the results of the study and shows the number of minutes of interaction with caregivers for each chimpanzee.

Some chimpanzees are more outgoing than others, which is reflected in the chart. For example, Binky, Maya, Rachel, and Tatu spend the most time with caregivers. Likewise, some chimpanzees are less interactive than others.

Caregiver Interactions in 2014

Fauna Study - Caregiver Interactions with Chimpanzees, ChartThis project works to ensure that the less outgoing also have interaction time with caregivers. It also points caregivers to the more elusive such as Sue Ellen, Chance, and Jethro. The finding that Jethro spends less time interacting with caregivers makes caregiver Kelsi Breen’s interaction with Jethro more heartwarming. Read Kelsi’s description of a sweet interaction with Jethro in her Caregiver Chronicles article on Fauna’s blog.

Fauna Caregiver Interactions - Isabelle and Chimpanzee Rachel
Isabelle and Rachel

Fauna Foundation

The Caregiving & Support Team at Fauna

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