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Yesterday we went on a Chimpanzee Habituation Trek in Kibale National Park. Before leading visitors to this group of about 120 chimpanzees, it took the rangers 5 years to get the animals used to the presence of humans. The chimps were reacting surprisingly little to our presence. It was amazing! We had to get up at 5 a.m. and were picked up half an hour later by two boda bodas, small motorcycles and their jockeys, who drove us along 8km of bumpy dirt roads to the park entrance, the road only slightly lit by the whimsy motorcycle lights. At 6 a.m. we were greeted by Ronald, our Uganda-Wildlife-Authority guide, and the two of us got a brief introduction into how to behave around the habituated chimpanzees: stay at least 7 m away; stand still when the males start to display — an impressively noisy affair of calls, running and jumping, and drumming against trees; and when they descend from a tree, don’t rush towards the tree.  Just about 30 minutes later, we were at the site where the guides had last seen them the day before and not far from there we heard a first wake-up call. We followed the call and when the first chimp descended from his nest and sat down barely 5 meters away from where we were waiting (the chimps don’t know about the 7-m rule), it was a hair-raising goose-bumps moment. Later came many more of such moments, but our very first encounter was the most noticeable. This very male, the boss of the sub-group of about 20 we were tracking, is also the one in this shot, which I took shortly after seeing him right in front of us for the first time. Over the next days I will upload more chimp pictures …

sgid: lat: 0.505 lon: 30.4

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One Response to Boss

  1. Föschter says:

    Bin begeistert von Deinen Bildern. Schau bestimmt einmal am Tag auf die Seite. Viel Spass noch auf Eurem Trip!!

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