Monday, November 3, 2008

Male-male competition

A brief update from Kelly in Senegal...where the chimps are coming back towards the village.  Recently, Kelly and the crew have been hiking out to the farther reaches of the home ranges, walking at least an hour to get to the closest point... Farafa is an adult female that has 3 offspring that we know of.  Her youngest, Fanta, is about 3 1/2 years of age right now...  Seems Farafa has been causing a lot of tension among the 10 adult males in the community.  Yopogon is currently Alpha, with Lupin at rank #4 and Bilbo (adult male in the photo below, crossing a recently cleared field) weighing in at #6... Here is what Kelly has to say:
"As for the chimps, things have been just great this week! And crazy!  Farafa is swelling, and the boys are just crazy about it.  Yopogon has already lost his left pinky toe and acquired a nasty gash on his right bicep.  Bilbo, Lupin and others also have various different cuts on their bodies due to the confrontations.  Needless to say, it has been much easier to find and follow them now because of the large group they are in, as well as the fact that they have come back to Fongoli!  I was just so tired of Tukantaba and Wakalare!"

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