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We are observing wild chimpanzees in an extraordinary habitat in Gabon to explore how environmental influences have shaped their behavior. By describing their unique abilities, we aim to increase human awareness of the importance of their protection and survival, and contribute to a better understanding of our own origins.

Research is Protection!

Species protection. Environmental protection. Climate Protection.

If you want to support our project, you can donate to Ozouga e.V. here:

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Forschung ist Schutz! Artenschutz. Umweltschutz. Klimaschutz.

Chimpanzee research at Loango

We have been conducting research on a chimpanzee population in the Central African rainforest of Gabon since 2005. Over the years, here's what we've been working on.

 
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About us

Our hearts beat for Ozouga. Research and conservation of the Loango chimpanzee population goes hand-in-hand with respecting nature and the needs and ideas of the local population.

 

Our passionate team of scientists, students and local employees work every day to improve our understanding of chimpanzees and their ecology. This in turns helps us understand the evolution of our own species as well.

 
Pinselohrschweine beim Grasen. Auch hier sind spannende Begegnungen mit den Schimpansen zu beobachten.

Loango 

National Park

 Loango National Park is located on the Atlantic coast of south-west Gabon, approximately 300 km from the Gabonese capital of Libreville. The park was established in 2002 and covers an area of 1,550 km².

Ein neugieriges Elefanten-Junges auf Entdeckungstour.
 

The Rekambo chimpanzees

Male chimpanzees
Arnold - Adolescent male chimpanzee
Arnold

Male / adolescent

Mother: Aroide

Arnold is a young low -ranking male. He spends a lot of time grooming other males. He often travels  with Chinois and is easily recognizable by his loud and distinct greeting calls.

Cesar - Juvenile male chimpanzee
Cesar

Male / juvenile

Mother: Carol

Cesar is a lively juvenile chimpanzee. He is the little brother of our alpha male Pandi. He is very confident and often risks getting into fights, even with older males, knowing that his high-ranking mother and brother will defend him.

Littlegrey - Adult male chimpanzee
Littlegrey

Male / adult

Mother: unknown

Littlegrey is a distinctive looking chimp very lean and with very grey fur. His name comes from when the chimpanzees were still being habituated and all we saw was a grey blob that was constantly in motion. He is Carol’s good friend and also likes to play with the babies in the group. There are periods when he spends quite a lot of time with Roxy and Chenge who we call the ‘Magic Trio’ when all three are together.

Thea - Adult male chimpanzee
Thea

Male / adult

Mother: Suzee

Thea has a uniformly dark coat and is becoming bigger and buffer so we have been observing him starting to find his place amongst the higher ranking males. He has lots of interactions with his family members including his little brother and sister: Sia and Sassandra.

Chenge - Adult male chimpanzee
Chenge

Male / adult

Mother: Roxy?

Chenge is a middle-ranking male. He often tries to impress other group members with his displays, when running through the forest while drumming against buttress roots or slapping on the ground. He spends a lot of time with Roxy who we suspect might be his mother.

Freddy - Adult male chimpanzee
Freddy

Male / adult

Mother: Mimi

A big teddy-bear of a chimp. Freddy is the dominant male Pandi’s best friend and a high-ranking chimp himself. Freddy is known for his distinctive sleeping pose where he sleeps facedown flat like a pancake. His mother, Mimi and little brother and sister, Moana and Madiba are also part of the Rekambo group.

Moana - Juvenile male chimpanzee
Moana

Male / juvenile

Mother: Mimi

Moana is a funny little chimp with a distinctive gait that looks like he’s trying to peddle a bicycle. He is very photogenic with a light face and dark black fur. He also has a very distinctive, high-pitched (and unpleasant) pant-hoot. He has a lot of play battles with Cesar and Sia, the other juvenile males.

Pandi - Adult male chimpanzee
Pandi

Male / adult

Mother: Carol

Pandi is without a doubt the coolest chimp in the group! He’s the dominant male and is not afraid to show it. He has a very distinctive vocalization – the raspberry, which involves pushing air through his pursed lips (a bit like a fart noise). He likes to be the center of attention and has a lot of social interactions with all group members.

Chinois - Adult male chimpanzee
Chinois

Male / adult

Mother: unknown

Chinois is the most impressive male in our group. He is characterized by his long and prominent face. He is high-ranking and a lot of the other chimpanzees do their best to stay in his good books. As the oldest male he often takes on a protector role and can usually be found at the back of group of travelling chimpanzees to ensure that nobody is left behind.

Gump - Adult male chimpanzee
Gump

Male / adult

Mother: Ida

Gump is one of our younger males. He is an interesting looking chimp with some funny mannerisms. We called him Gump after the infamous Forest Gump because during the years of habituation he was always running! He has now grown up and spends a lot more time with the main group, however he still loves to be with his mother Ida, little brother Iboga and adopted little sister Olive. His favourite play mate is Sassandra.

Ngonde - Adult male chimpanzee
Ngonde

Male / adult

Mother: Pai

Ngonde is definitely the male of the community that is most shy around humans. He is quite low ranking and spends a lot of time following in the footsteps of Chinois.

Female chimpanzees
Aroide - Adult female chimpanzee
Aroide

Female / adult

Aroide is a mother to both Arnold and Assala. She has very unique scared ears that stick up on her head and are easy to recognize. She has become more habituated over the last year and now spends more time with the main group. The family of Aroide are very close and the three are often followed alone as a sub-party for multiple days.

Ida - Adult female chimpanzee
Ida

Female / adult

Ida is quite a shy and independent female. She spends most of her time with her adolescent son, Gump and her new adopted daughter, Olive.

Joy - Adult female chimpanzee
Joy

Female / adult

Joy is the youngest of the adult females in the group. She’s one of the most popular females among the males and is groomed a lot.

Olive - Juvenile chimpanzee
Olive

Female / juveniles

Olive is undoubtably one of the cutest chimpanzees around! Sadly, her mother, Otangani, passed away in 2020 and she turned up alone in the group. However, the males and an adult female Ida were kind enough to take little Olive under their wing. She is now growing up to be a playful and adventurous juvenile. 

Roxy - Adult female chimpanzee
Roxy

Female / adult

Roxy spends all of her time in proximity to Chenge. When she is separated from Chenge, or the rest of the group moves on, she has the tendency to start crying and doesn’t stop until another individual replies. Roxy is also a very vocal female and joins in on drumming displays with the males.

Suzee - Adult female chimpanzee
Suzee

Female / adult

Suzee is a caring mother and spends all her time around her family. She loves playing with her offspring Sia and Sassandra. Her oldest son Thea is already grown up, but still spends lots of time with his family.

Assala - Adult female chimpanzee
Assala

Female / adult

Assala is Arnold’s little sister and Aroide’s daughter. Conforming to the family characteristic, she too has large ears and pointed conehead. She is a quiet teenager, who spends all her time with her family, and hardly ever gets into inconvenient situations with the other members of the group. Soon she will have to migrate to another community.

Ikoulou - Adult female chimpanzee
Ikoulou

Female / adult

Ikoulou is one of the most dominant females of the group and certainly one of the largest in size. Equipped with a strong and determined character, she is also one of the most loved females by the males of the group, in particular by Pandi and Chinois.

Kira - Adult female chimpanzee
Kira

Female / adult

Kira also was first spotted with Diboti in November 2020; however, it took her a little longer to become fully integrated into the Rekambo community. One of her most distinctive traits is that she likes to perform loud exaggerated displays, which are quite rare in female chimpanzees.

Pai - Adult female chimpanzee
Pai

Female / adult

Pai is one of our older females and spends quite a lot of time without the main group. She is mother to Ngonde and little Pastis.

Sassandra - Juvenile chimpanzee
Sassandra

Female / juveniles

Little Sassandra is the star of the group, and is the favourite of many human observers as well as many other chimpanzees in the community. Under her mother Suzee’s watchful eye she loves to roll around and play with all the adults. She is growing up to be a confident, extroverted little lady who gets away with all her mischievous behaviour. 

Zoe - Adult female chimpanzee
Zoe

Female / adult

Zoe is also a new-comer to the group along with Diboti and Kira. Physically her most remarkable trait is her white eye which is hard to miss. From the beginning, she has been incredibly calm in front of human observers, although by nature she is very shy and reserved. She is now finding her place amongst the females of the group but has the friendship of other newcomers this year to help support her.

Diboti - Adult female chimpanzee
Diboti

Female / adult

Diboti was first seen with the group along with Kira in November 2020 but joined permanently a few months later. At first, she was a little shy but now she is finding her place amongst the other females. She has a very unique face shape and is easily recognisable with her big ears and bald head.

Ivindo - Adult female chimpanzee
Ivindo

Female / adult

Ivindo has now become an important member of our community. Daughter of Ikoulou and nine years of age, she is one of the most curious and exploratory individuals, who likes to play and interact with others. Physically, her most notable feature is her highlighted pink lips.

Mimi - Adult female chimpanzee
Mimi

Female / adult

Mimi is a successful mother of three, Freddy, Moana and little Madiba.

Queliba - Adult female chimpanzee
Queliba

Female / adult

Queliba is an orphan and has a severely crippled hand. She therefore spends a lot of time travelling bipedally. She is small for her age and very thin.