Monarto Safari Park

Four out! Quadruple the celebration for Chimpanzee troop

What do you do when four chimpanzees share birthdays in the same month? Why, you hold the biggest, boldest and banana-filled birthday bash ever, that’s what! And to make sure human onlookers leap to attention and and wish the Chimpanzees all the best? You offer 2 for 1 entry to Monarto Safari Park up to and including leap day!

Keepers at Monarto Safari Park pulled out all the stops today to mark the birthdays of Hope, Gombe, Sandali and Galatea.

“Hope was named by ethologist and United Nations Messenger of Peace, Dr Jane Goodall as was her little brother, Happy,” said keeper Sarah Washford. “Dr Goodall chose the names Hope and Happy as they are emotions that she feels are very important in our lives and of chimpanzees. In particular, Dr Goodall has high hopes for the species’ wellbeing.

“As well as Hope, we’re also celebrating the birthdays of Gombe, Sandali and Galatea,” said Sarah.

Male Gombe is the second oldest Chimpanzee at Monarto Safari Park and turned 31 on 4 February while male Sandali turns 28 on 26 February and female Galatea turns 25 on 24 February!

“The Chimpanzee troop at Monarto Safari Park is very special,” continued Sarah. “There is always something happening whether it’s play with little Happy, Hope and Zola or antics from Zola’s older brother Enzi.

“The troop gets very excited when they know there’s about to be an enrichment-filled party. They watch from their day room as us keepers go into the habitat and put out the enrichment items such as boxes filled with healthy snacks, fruits and celery sticks.

“When they get out onto the habitat, they often try to stash as many items as they can and hope that the other Chimpanzees don’t notice – but they always do and then it all kicks off! There’ll be hoots and all sorts of capers.

“The Chimpanzees seem to particularly enjoy using sticks to pick out tasty morsels in specially crafted envelopes. This behaviour replicates how Chimpanzees act when they find a tasty termite nest in the wild,” finished Sarah.

The celebrations at Monarto Safari Park continue with the Leap Year 2 for 1 ticket offer. Visitorsmembers and life members can bring a friend for FREE from today 19 February 2024 until 29 February 2024. Full details can be found here.

The IUCN has classified the Chimpanzee as endangered with a decreasing population mostly due to poaching, habitat loss and disease. Without greater action it’s possible that the Chimpanzee species could become extinct. What can the general public do to help? Zoos SA is diverting mobile phones from landfill and raising funds for primate conservation through recycling of old phones. When you donate your unused phones to Zoos SA as part of our They’re Calling on You campaign, the funds generated through recycling directly supports on-ground work with Tacugama Chimpanzee Sanctuary and the Jane Goodall Institute Australia.

Mobile phone recycling boxes can be found at both Monarto Safari Park and sister site Adelaide Zoo.

About Zoos SA

Zoos SA is a not-for-profit conservation charity that exists to connect people with nature and save species from extinction.

Zoos SA acknowledges the Country on which we stand always was, and always will be, Aboriginal land and we pay our deepest respect and gratitude to Kaurna (Adelaide Zoo) and Ngarrindjeri (Monarto Safari Park) Elders, past, present and emerging.

We undertake critical conservation work throughout Australia and acknowledge the traditional custodians of these lands.

Sign Up to Our Newsletter

Stay up to date with zoo news and sign up to our Zoo Times eNewsletter