Research/Care Blog

Koko's Stamp of Approval

Koko and I interact in 3D Maui Model

Date Added: 2001-06-24
As I am sitting on the swing outside the large enclosure Koko comes over to me. Amongst the notebook, daily checklist and data sheets I am holding, I have a printed version of our new 3D representation of the planned Maui Sanctuary habitat. As I review it, I share it with Koko, flipping through several pages depicting the layout of the sanctuary, including an aerial view of the 3D model. When I show her a page with herself and Ndume in the new yard she purrs* in contentment. Next I show her one (reproduced here) that includes me in the communication pagoda as well as her and Ndume outside it. She signs, “Me people, there you.”

Interesting comment, as I am clearly the one in the “cage” in this future home for the gorillas!

When I think of how much more appropriate--large, free, warm and natural--this setting will be, I yearn for the day that she and her gorilla family will actually live and prosper there.
* Purring is a low-pitched vocalization that is a sign of contentment in gorillas.

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