BALTIMORE, MD — The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore is excited to announce the addition of a 30-year-old female chimpanzee to the Zoo’s troop. “Jane” arrived in early November from the Rolling Hills Zoo in Salina, Kansas. “Jane spent 30 days in quarantine after her arrival, which is standard protocol for all animals moving into the Zoo,” stated Carey Ricciardone, mammal collections and conservation manager. “She did very well with her new keepers, and is in excellent health.”
“After quarantine, we worked slowly to introduce Jane to the other chimps during a series of ‘howdies,’ meaning that the chimps could see, hear and smell one another, but were not sharing the same physical space,” Ricciardone continued. “Chimpanzees are amazingly strong, and can be very territorial. Physical introductions between chimps are very methodical. We need to observe how each of the chimps reacts to one another before providing additional access to the rest of the troop.”
Prior to Rolling Hills Zoo, she lived at the Riverside Discovery Center Zoo in Scottsbluff, Nebraska, where she was also a member of a small chimpanzee troop. “Our troop of ten chimps is a considerably larger group than she is used to,” said Ricciardone. “This is a change for her and so far she is doing well. She is very appropriate with all her social interactions and as she gets comfortable with the troop, we’ll see more of her personality come out.”
The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore participates in the Association of Zoos & Aquarium’s (AZA) Chimpanzee Species Survival Plan (SSP) and Jane was moved to the Zoo on a breeding recommendation from the SSP. The Zoo now has a troop of 11 chimpanzees. There are approximately 275 chimps in AZA-accredited zoos in North America. In the past 30-35 years, wild chimpanzee populations have diminished to about half of what they were. Chimpanzees are endangered due to widespread habitat destruction in Africa.