Strife and Happy Returns

10th May 2014

No luck so far with getting a new companion for Rolo, in fact a big step back when he bit and badly injured Aaji's finger, after tempting her to the wire partition. This of course has not endeared him to Aaji or Tansy, just confirmed that they are not wanting anything to do with the males of their species. Rolo, before his rescue, had spent his life from a baby on a short chain at the bottom of his owner's garden, never even seeing another of his species and with no positive human contact either, so there is no wonder that he doesn't understand even basic manners.

Katrina Shows her scars
Katrina Shows her scars
The most common cause of death in wild monkeys is from the injuries sustained when they are fighting. If Aaji and Tansy happened to spot poor Katrina as she was rushed to the vets for stitching, that will only have reinforced their lack of enthusiasm at having another monkey in their pen.

Kirsty and Katrina have shared a pen for many years and are both rhesus macaque females. They fell out at feeding time over some item of food they both wanted, and although the staff were right there to immediately break up the fight, Katrina ended up with a long gash on her head needing many stitches. She luckily healed very quickly and without complications, but it now means that they have to be separated when food is around , as now Kirsty has overthrown the elderly Katrina as the dominant monkey, she wont hesitate to push her advantage at feeding times, just to emphasize her new role as boss. Katrina is now an old monkey but when the young Kirsty was rescued, she was willing to make friends and comfort her, but it may be when Katrina has fully accepted her new role as a subordinate, they will be able to fully share a pen again.

Silva and Parker, the two youngest langurs, have now progressed into a pen outside and have settled down well, taking a great interest in seeing the wild troop pass through the garden. Wouldn't it be great to just be able to let them join them, and wave a happy goodbye! if only they wouldn't immediately be attacked, and even killed, as trespassing strangers. Both are still wary of too much human contact, having lived their first year before being orphaned in the wild, but we still hope they will, with enough time and patience, accept to at least to be taken out in the garden for regular walks.

Dixie is still very attached to them as her best monkey friends, but they are beginning to find her very wearing, with her hyper behavior, compared to the langur species and their more laid back attitude. Because langurs are forest monkeys, living on mainly leaves of which there are usually plenty at hand, they don't have the high activity level of the macaques who are opportunists and always on the look out for something that's edible, or even just something new and interesting.

When with the langurs at feeding times, she will look to see what they are most interested in, and even if its something she doesn't much like to eat, like lettuce or any greens, she will snatch that away and then just drop it on the floor when she looses interest, just to make quite certain she's not missing anything good.

Dixie and Lavendar and Ruby Mothering Dixie
Dixie and Lavendar and Ruby Mothering Dixie
Dixie now spends much of her time out for walks or swimming in the pool, this gives the langurs a chance for an undisturbed nap, not possible with the ever active Dixie. She has also been introduced to Lavender and Ruby, Lavender is the nearest female macaque in age to her, and will tolerate her, but they are not really friends as yet. Ruby, although so behaviorally disturbed from her previous cruel treatment, does like to mother her and Dixie loves the attention and both will happily sit on John's bed in the evening. Ruby is very good with her, but that's with no food present, if it was, Ruby would quickly change her attitude from 'dear little baby' to 'rival for food'. Dennis, the nearest in age to her, is still terrified of Dixie and her antics, having never before met a baby, but we hope given time and Dixie learning some manners, they will all get on well enough to share a pen

Thug, returned as suddenly as he went
Thug, returned as suddenly as he went
On the cat front some good and astonishing news. Thug, a large, not to say bulky tabby and white neutered male who has been with us for years, disappeared very suddenly more than three weeks ago. We have lost several kittens and cats over the years in the same sudden way, and have put these losses down to the massive pythons in the area, the monitor lizards or even the giant eagles that abound here, although we were surprised he was taken, due to his size and weight. Much to our amazement he has just turned up in the kitchen as suddenly as he left, demanding food and very thin at about half his original weight and a little wobbly on his feet. There is no way that someone else would have taken him in, so called pet cats hardly ever get indoors here, and the only ones that do, or would get stolen are the fancy ones, pedigrees, pure whites perhaps or very fluffy. The only explanation we can think of is that he got into a visitors car that day, and got taken out of the area, far enough that it took him 3 weeks to walk back! He hasn't stopped eating or purring since his return and seems very thankful to be home again.

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