Baboon in the Family


Baboon in the Family

A true story of a baboon rescued from a Lagos market in the 1950s. Written in an era long since passed, the story portrays life prior to Nigerian independence.

Jackie our pet baboon eating a banana
She lay, a small furry bundle in a wire cage, bewildered and trembling with fear. The mid-day sun beat down on the hustling West African market, the coconut matting shades giving little relief from the intense heat. Everywhere was a confusion of colour noise and smell; barefoot traders carried their wares upon their heads and goats, dogs and chickens mingled freely with the crowd.
Among this colourful throng was a stall which offered for sale an exotic variety of small animals, birds and reptiles. Tethered to a branch were several angry looking chameleons, normally brilliant green, today black from anger and the dull colour of the market stall. Three African grey parrots were confined in small cages and in a wicker basket lay a lethargic young python.
Every so often the misery of the small, caged baboon would turn into fury and she would leap up and down screaming with fear. Then, fully aware of her predicament would succumb and huddle quietly on the rough tin floor of her cage until her indignation would mount again to a wild frenzy. She was confined in a small rusty parrot cage, the fastening being reinforced with wire, as her captor was as afraid of her as she was of him.
Yesterday, there had been the warmth and security of her mother’s body; the frolics with the other youngsters in the troop, the endless grooming, chattering and foraging in the forests. Then there was a terrified ear-splitting screeching as the troop raced through the undergrowth in an effort to thwart the hunters who pursued them. Suddenly her mother fell and rough hands dragged the young baboon away into the strange and frightening world of humans...

Baboon Story Audio

To read the full story download the attachment below.

C.A.R.E.  ~ (The Centre for Animal Rehabilitation and Education), established over 26 years ago, in 1989 is a rehabilitation centre on the riverside of the Olifants River in Limpopo South Africa.
With purpose built facilities C.A.R.E. are committed to the rescue, care, rehabilitation, release and protection of wild animals, no animal in need is ever turned away. C.A.R.E. rely solely on the generosity of caring individuals to fund the centre, and also volunteers to help us run the centre too.
Founded in 1989 by the late Rita Miljo as a refuge for a handful of baboons whom had been subjected to abuse by humans, C.A.R.E. has since grown into the largest rehabilitation centre for chacma baboons worldwide.
Based on the edge of the Kruger National Park in South Africa, C.A.R.E. is the perfect setting for wildlife rehabilitation and volunteers come from all over the world to help care for the baboons. C.A.R.E. currently house around 450 baboons [2015] and are one of the only sanctuaries that have experience for giving refuge to orphaned and injured baboons in South Africa. C.A.R.E. have an extremely high success rate of releasing hand-reared, fully formed troops back into the wild.
There was a devastating fire in 2012 which destroyed the main facilities and sadly Rita and three baboons died. Since then, the team have been dedicated to continue Rita's legacy. New facilities have been constructed with more underway. A new Veterinary Clinic funded by IPPL and the Boda Trust was built in 2014, along with a new nursery, baboon kitchen and soon to be completed Education Centre.
The team have also released three troops of baboons since along with many males as 'dispersing males' which have joined chosen wild troops.
The rehabilitation methods continue to be refined, meaning orphan baby baboons are quickly bonded to an adult baboon female which acts as the surrogate mother, this minimises time needing to be spent in captivity.
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