Saturday, February 28, 2009

Fongoli presentation

This is a wonderful presentation by Frans Lanting and Chris Eckstrom on the summer they spent with me, filming and photographing the Fongoli chimps for National Geographic.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Monkeys beware!

It seems the Fongoli chimps have been wreaking havoc on the vervet and baboon populations at Fongoli.  Project manager Kelly Boyer sent this description, along with a report of the latest incident.  Last week, she saw the females with a juvenile baboon.  This description refers to 2 vervet monkey hunts (Bo and his captured vervet monkey are pictured above in a photo taken by Kelly):

"I had told you about Bo the last time and, although I didn't see the hunt, I was able to write about what I saw in terms of begging and food sharing, or lack thereof! This week, however, I was lucky enough to have witnessed the successful hunt of a vervet monkey by Bilbo! The vervet was in the overhead vines that the chimps were sleeping under; he must have been scared out of his little mind and waited at least an hour before he decided to make his escape...unfortunately for him (but fortunately for Bilbo!) his escape was not successful...

Friday, February 20, 2009

So far, so good!

I talked to Dondo Kante on Thursday, and he gave me the good news that Tia's wounds (from the dogs during the incident where Aimee was captured) are almost completely healed.  She and Aimee continue to do well almost 3 weeks after we were able to return Aimee to Tia.  Kelly Boyer also reports that the chimps captured another juvenile baboon this past week.  She didn't see who initially got the baboon, but she saw females eating meat, including Tia, Nickel and Nellie.  If you happen to be in the neighborhood, I'm giving a few talks this spring about the Fongoli chimps at the Houston Museum of Natural Science.  I'll also be giving the Presidential Lecture at Iowa State.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Miracle reunion update!

Update on Tia and Aimee - according to co-project manager Kelly Boyer, the two are doing fine.  Johnny Dondo Kante followed the party they were in yesterday at Fongoli.  To hear more about the story of Dondo, Tia and Aimee, you can listen to this podcast of a radio interview I did on Iowa Public Radio's The Exchange:

Friday, February 6, 2009

Update on Aimee and Tia

I got GREAT news today from project manager Kelly Boyer, who has arrived back in Kedougou, and, along with project manager Dondo "Johnny" Kante (the hero of Aimee's chimpnapping story!), is collecting data for me while I finish out the semester at Iowa State before heading back to Senegal.  Here is an excerpt from Kelly's email:

"...things here are good. Tia and Aimee are doing very well. I was able to follow them with Dondo (Johnny Kante) on Tuesday and Wednesday, and they looked great.  I even saw little Aimee fall asleep with Bilbo (an adult male) during an afternoon nap. It was adorable."

Above is a photo of Bilbo, Tia and little Aimee last July, moving across a newly-cut field when Aimee was only about a month or so old...

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Aimee's return to Tia

This brief video shows some of the return of Aimee to her mother, Tia.