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                                     Hilda Tresz                        Global Volunteer Work

Argentina Chile China  Egypt India Ivory Coast Qatar Senegal United Arab Emirates


Fe c ha: jueves, 9 de di c iembre de 2010, 20:29

Hi everybody,

I just got back yesterday and I’m pleased to say that   the introduction was successful. Coco and Toti are getting along well, they were even grooming by the third day which to me is amazing, considering that they were two total strangers. We modified the chimpanzees’ diet and started to make immediate changes by getting them off of the wet concrete, providing edible browse and installing fire hoses, because the exhibit lacked all flexible supports and therefore could not provide efficient locomotion. 



Changing Coco's diet!

Right before Toto wakes up Transporting Toti The Howdy period (getting to see each other safely)


Coco and Toti

(Getting to Know each other)

  I gave 5 enrichment lectures in Cordoba , Buenos Aires , La Plata and in a veterinary university. At first I was talking mostly about enrichment but then, as I was walking around the zoos, I realized the la c k of basic husbandry knowledge, so I started to talk about those as well. I also ended up giving 3 elephant presentations (I was so glad I had it on my desk top) trying to improve their current elephant situation.

I feel I have reached out to many people. In Cordoba I gave a 3 hour presentation and everybody was so interested in our programs they refused to have breaks even if I offered it twice. That, to me was a clear indicator that they were really listening and not just being polite. People were honestly amazed by our programs and I was very proud to present them. People were asking many questions and took notes; especially the young veterinary students and the biologists who I think will be our best future allies as the next generation.

After and also during the introduction (when I had extra time) I walked around with the director, the veterinarian and the animal manager in Cordoba and went to cage to cage addressing each species and their needs. A young translator girl took my notes and by the next day the zoo had my written recommendation in Spanish in 15 copies available to all management. We agreed to take all animals (not just chimps) off of the concrete and add substrates whenever possible. It will be not easy since they seem to be lacking materials such as Bermuda hay or straw, but we still have paper, dry leaves, sand, soil or Alfalfa hay to work with.

We agreed on starting systematically working on their browse situation. We appointed a young biologist to be charge of this program and I will work with him to design a self-sustaining browse garden/system in the near future. Currently animals are not receiving browse due to lack all resources including gardeners, trees, equipment, etc. We will work on that.

I also addressed the inbreeding problems in B. A. and elimination of keeping primates in solitary confinements. As you can see below, the B.A. Zoo is already making changes, so I’m very glad. 



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