Ockie and his buddy Cassie.
Ockie and his buddy Cassie.

Rocky Zoo chimps could get new mates if council gives nod

TWO chimpanzees from Israel could be swinging high in Rockhampton if the local council gives them the thumbs up. In yesterday's Parks and Recreation Committee meeting, councillors passed a motion for Rockhamp- ton Regional Council to consider increasing the chimpanzee population at Rockhampton Zoo.

Committee chairwoman Cr Cherie Rutherford said there was no cost to buy the chimpanzees but the cost to have them freighted and quarantined was $31,000.

It was hoped the addition of two "appropriate" chimpanzees would be a step towards establishing a functional social group at the zoo after the loss of Ockie the chimp last year.

"This would allow a higher welfare level for the current population (at the zoo) through the increased interactions and activities stimulated by the presence of other members of their species," she said. Cr Rutherford revealed the resident male chimpanzee Cassie was having problems interacting with females at the zoo.

It was hoped that two new imports could give Cassie a bit of a hand to try to woo the ladies. The council will decide on the matter next Tuesday at a full council meeting.



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