Chimps try out their new home

THE Rockhampton Zoo’s chimpanzees started to settle into their new home yesterday after leaving their long-term enclosure.

Cassie and Ockie were moved into the night-house component of the new chimp enclosure before the final touches of construction are completed.

Zoo keeper Graeme Strachan told the ABC that the $1.2 million project would provide the chimps with a more natural living space.

Mr Strachan said the environment was much more complex and so much more natural than what they’ve been used to for the past 20 years.

He said the new enclosure was more spacious and had more height to it to allow the animals more to do and think about.

Cs Cherie Rutherford said an anticipated three or four weeks work was still to be carried out before the entire enclosure was accessible to the chimps.

“Cassie and Ockie appear to be settling into the night house well,” she said.

The new environment was more interactive and even had a couple of extra luxuries for the boys.

Repair and construction work started yesterday on the old enclosure, and some minor landscaping work is to be completed in the coming weeks.

The old enclosure will be joined to the new area to create a larger area for the boys to live in.

While this work is carried out Cassie and Ockie will not be accessible to the public. Cr Rutherford said the chimps would need time to adjust to their new surroundings.



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