Baby Chimp Hug Fest

You know how some women say that when they see babies their ovaries ache? I feel like that when I see baby chimps. That's why I'm jealous of Escape to Chimp Eden's Eugene Cussons, who gets to hug them for a living.

The docu-reality series on Animal Planet follows Cussons, who is the Director of the Jane Goodall Institute's Chimp Eden Sanctuary in South Africa. He rescues chimps living in terrible conditions in human captivity — often raised alone in one cage, and tormented by school children visiting a zoo — brings them to the Sanctuary, and teaches them how to socialize with other chimps, in hopes that he can give them the tools to live in the wild.


In this clip, a group of baby chimps are in quarantine with 14-year-old Martha — who is the matriarch of the "family" by default — preparing for their big move into the Sanctuary. Having been raised in horrible conditions in a cheap zoo, she never interacted with anyone other than gawking zoo attendees and indifferent zookeepers. She has become attached to Cussons, the way the babies are, and now that she is used to his hugs and affection, she is going through a stage of jealousy when she sees him receiving hugs and affection from others.



That so awesome that Martha smacked the little one for playing too rough. I wonder if it is because she knows that he is a human and doesn't have the teeth/strength to play hard back? Or does she see him as a fellow monkey who was clearly getting annoyed at the little one?