Ockie (pictured) and his buddy Cassie now have female company.
Ockie (pictured) and his buddy Cassie now have female company.

Zoo welcomes female chimps

ROCKHAMPTON'S zoo has two new female chimpanzees.

Samantha and Holly arrived yesterday after a 30-hour road trip from Mogo Zoo, on the south coast of New South Wales.

"Samantha is 28 years old and Holly is 23," Councillor Cherie Rutherford said.

"The girls are a wonderful addition to the Rockhampton Zoo, and I have no doubt that Cassie and Ockie are excited to meet them particularly as this is the first time they have seen other chimps in more than 25 years."

The transfer of the chimps to Rockhampton was a recommendation of the Regional Chimpanzee Management Plan conducted by the Zoo and Aquarium Association.

"The four chimps carry some of the best genetic diversity for this species in the region so breeding would be a wonderful achievement," Cr Rutherford said

.The council wants to give the chimps some time to settle into their new home, so for a period of time public access to their enclosure will be restricted to ensure that they aren't unduly stressed.

Samantha and Holly will remain in the old chimpanzee enclosure before they are introduced into the new enclosure with the boys.

Residents in the area may also note an increase in noise coming from the chimps while they explore their new enclosure and interact with Cassie and Ockie.

While settling in, the four chimps are on a structured introduction program.



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