We all know by now that chimpanzees are really smart. And, if you are familiar with Chimpanzee Sanctuary Northwest, you know that boss Jamie chimpanzee often shows off her intellect. Sometimes she even impresses those of us in the know, however.
Case in point: the other day I was doing a perimeter walk with Jamie and she turned back to gather two big tumbleweeds. At first I wasn’t sure what she was doing – she doesn’t usually pick up tumbleweeds on our walks. Plus they were rather awkward to carry. They kept slipping out of her hand as they scraped against the ground, but, each time, she would pick them back up and continue the walk.
At one point she stood up bipedally and put one of the tumbleweeds in her mouth for easier carrying. She also took a good long look at the boots I was wearing, and I became clued in to her plans.
When the walk was complete, I met her and her tumbleweeds in the greenhouse. Jamie pulled up the big black tub to sit on.
And then she proceeded to alter one of the tumbleweeds to her liking:
Once she was satisfied with her tool, she pushed it through the caging and began to groom the boot I was wearing (which, of course, she had picked out prior to our walk).
Imagine the forethought that it took for her to go through the process of seeing an unruly tumbleweed well before the walk was finished to the grooming session that she imagined would happen minutes later. She’s one smart cookie!