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Michel Waller

Michel Waller is an assistant professor of anthropology at Central Oregon Community College and an instructor of anthropology for the University of Oregon. He studies bonobo and chimpanzee […]

More Than Just Animals

Taking care of animals is often more than just taking care of animals. For the small team of staff at Chimps Inc., we extend ourselves to realms beyond our natural being. To the best of our abilities, we strive to […]

Foods for Sharing

The chimps made me feel like a celebrity today, but it was the large tub of produce in my hands rather that served as the primary source of their excitement. ‘Tis the season for unique fruits and veggies that are […]

The Bonus of Fruit Juice by Mr. Jackson

Today was a day for frozen treats and lots of drinks. The hot weather always serves the chimps with rounds of yummy cold things to help cool off in the afternoon sun. After giving Jackson a fruity frozen smoothie today, I […]

What Eyes Can Tell

Of the many fascinating characteristics observed in chimpanzees, my favorite happens to be the various facial expressions they exhibit. By observing and comparing facial expressions with circumstances that surround their environment, we acquire insight on what might be going through their mind. […]

The Sounds of Grooming

It was a beautiful day today at Chimps Inc. Many of the chimps were lounging around in the sun and grooming each other. While grooming, chimps often vocalize by making lip-smacking noises. Jackson can sometimes be heard making a form […]

Dandelions for Patti

Patti loves eating dandelions, and will often catch the attention of one of the caregivers as they walk past, and point to a patch of them growing next to an outdoor enclosure just out of her reach. Today she got my attention […]

Chimpanzee Vocalizations

Vocal communication also conveys a wide variety of emotional states and intentions and often serves to affect the behaviors of those that hear the calls. Chimpanzee vocalizations are a graded system formed from only 4 different call types: grunts, barks, […]

Jackson the Improviser

The chimps have been engrossed with the recent unbreakable mirror donations we have received recently, and Jackson simply can’t get enough of looking at his handsome self. Recently, when a mirror isn’t handy, we have seen him on multiple occasions […]

Sharing is Caring

Yesterday, we celebrated female chimp, CJ’s 16th birthday. What a lovely day of sun, warmth, and colorful gifts for the chimps to enjoy. So many colorful bags filled with special toys and treats, unique to the personalities of each chimp. […]

The Joy of Spring

Sometimes waking up early in the morning to volunteer is tough. Even when it means you get to spend the morning with your favorite chimpanzees. Lately, however, there’s a bit of magic in the air. The birds are chirping all […]

A Present for Herbie

Herbie loves jewelry. Necklaces, bracelets, bows, you name it. His favorite, though, are rings, and he’s been coveting one of mine for over a year now. This particular ring has two bands: one that goes on your finger, and another that […]

Chimp Change Challenge

This year we are proudly celebrating 20 years of providing chimpanzees with sanctuary since we opened our doors to Topo in 1995. In honor of our 20th anniversary, we are challenging new friends and devoted supporters to join us in […]

Post-Easter Afternoon

Post Easter celebration yields relaxation for all…. After several rounds of Easter egg hunts and forages, all of the animals at Chimps Inc. are now enjoying a peaceful, semi-lazy Sunday afternoon. Patti is lounging in the Big Outdoor habitat where […]

Easter Eggs For Chimps

Here, here for colorful, little, oval-shaped objects that hold tasty treasures inside! The chimps know Easter quite well. It is the only time of year when large bins of eggs get dispersed sporadically throughout all outdoor habitats. Staff take over […]

Old Enrichment Never Dies

The braided fire hose in this photo is a classic piece of enrichment which seemingly finds its way back to the chimps’ hands, time and time again. Created by one of our amazing past interns, almost five years ago, the […]

Iceberg Lettuce Galore

Today was a great day for the chimps, and it was all due to three cases of iceberg lettuce that a local produce vendor donated this morning. What’s so exciting about iceberg lettuce, you ask? I have no idea. Seriously, I just don’t […]

Dandelions for Patti

Dandelions for Patti  Courtesy of early, spring-like weather, a few small dandelion patches have begun to sprout in areas around the sanctuary. Though most of us prefer to rid these little weeds from our garden, alpha-chimp, Patti begs the differ. These colorful blooms are enough to raise […]