The Saint Louis Zoo chimpanzee family is comprised of 9 individuals: 2 males and 7 females.
Ever met someone so spoiled as a baby that she's having problems making friends as an adult? Well, meet Bakhari. She was treated as something of a "princess" as an infant, so is now finding it a bit hard growing up. But Bakhari is slowly learning adult social skills in her usual charming, cautious way. Bakhari was raised with Holly, her adopted sister, and the two are almost always together. When she isn't with Holly, Bakhari plays with Tammy, cuddling and hugging the younger chimp.
Sweet little Holly was raised as a sister to Bakhari, and the two girls are nearly always in each other’s company. Holly is generous and giving, and usually lets Bakhari have her way. Still, Holly has a daredevil streak. She’s always the chimp that climbs the highest and the furthest, and the first one to try new things. She also loves to gently tease the others. Though Holly stays closest to Bakhari, she also spends time with Tammy.
Hugo is alpha male, the “leader” of the troop. His large size helps him maintain his status, as do his displays of strength. Though Hugo can be unpredictable, he is usually gentle with the females. They welcome this, and often repay him by grooming him -- one of the “perks” of being a leader! Hugo not only loves Mlinzi, the highest-ranking female, but also hangs out with Smoke.
They say being #2 makes you try harder. That seems to be the case with Jimiyu, the beta (or second-ranking) male in the group. Jimiyu used to be the low-ranking male, so he is definitely moving up. Since he’s smaller than the higher-ranking Hugo, he'll have to rely on brains and personality to gain more power. But this won't be hard for a smart guy like Jimiyu.As a young chimp, Jimiyu used to tease the females. But now that he’s older and more serious, he spends more time grooming them. Smart guy!
Ever notice that popular people can get away with things? This seems to be the case with Mlinzi. She's the dominant female in the group, and also the most expressive and dramatic. Mlinzi is prone to temper tantrums when things don't go her way, and isn't afraid to start fights.Mlinzi has acted as substitute mother to Holly, Bakhari and Tammy, which has been a lot of work for her. But she has risen to the challenge and remains a favorite of her old friend, Hugo. She spends a lot of time near Hugo and the other females.
From the start, Tammy was special. She came to our Zoo as an 18-month old orphan in 2003, having been raised by humans. Happily, she has shown few of the problems common to chimps that aren't raised by a real chimp mother. Instead, Tammy is blessed with a self-confidence, spirit, and intelligence rare in anyone, human or chimp.Tammy plays constantly with the females, and loves being tickled by Smoke.
Newcomers to the group in 2007 include:
Rosebud, her daughter Utamu, and Beauty