A Day in the Life of a Chimpanzee Caregiver
at Second Chance Chimpanzee Refuge Liberia
Our dedicated staff works around the clock to ensure the chimps’ daily care, well-being, and safety. The team includes a variety of roles, from security staff to vehicle and boat mechanics to direct caregivers. Because of the remote nature of the mangrove islands where the chimpanzees live, we often get questions about how the chimps receive their daily care. The caregivers work tirelessly in challenging conditions to follow a carefully planned routine!
7:00 AM – Caregivers select, weigh, and wash fresh fruits and vegetables and place all of the food into containers for easy transport to the islands. They also prepare medicine for individual chimpanzees.
8:30 AM – Caregivers load the food for the chimps onto a truck and drive to the dock, stopping along on the way at the water tower to gather fresh drinking water for the chimps. They clean the boats and test the engines, then divide the food onto boats according to the island route before they set out.
9:00 AM – Caregivers travel by boat to the islands. Once they arrive, they carry out head counts to ensure that all of the chimps are accounted for while distributing food and water. They also observe each chimpanzee and take notes on behaviors, any conflicts between the chimpanzees, and any injuries or illnesses.
11:00 AM – After the chimps have been fed and received fresh water, one group of caregivers returns to the office to prepare food for the afternoon and clean the food storage space. The second group stays at the islands to continue observing the chimpanzees and taking notes on behaviors, conflicts, and any injuries or illnesses.
1:00 PM – Caregivers finish preparing the food for the second feeding of the day, drive it to the dock, and deliver it to the islands, where it is distributed to the chimps.
5:00 PM – All caregivers return to the offices and present detailed field reports on the chimpanzees’ health and welfare.