Mama, a 59-year-old chimpanzee at the Royal Burgers Zoo in Arnhem, the Netherlands, was the colony’s matriarch. The colony is well-known for pioneering monkey behavior research, which resulted in Frans De Waal’s book Chimpanzee Politics.
She was nearing the end of her life in April 2016, unwell and unable to eat. Jan van Hooff, a co-founder of the colony and a professor of behavioral biology, returned to pay his respects to Mama after hearing the news. He had known her since 1972 and the two had a close relationship.
Mama, who was sick and accepting of her impending death, didn’t recognize Jan at first. When she does, though, her feelings are visible to everybody and are a thing of beauty. Take a look at the video below to witness the incredible link that can be formed between animals and people, and don’t forget to bring some Kleenex.
Mama, a 59-year-old chimpanzee at the Royal Burgers Zoo in Arnhem, the Netherlands, was the colony’s matriarch.
She was ill and unable to eat as she reached the end of her life.
At first Mama, weak and seemingly accepting of her nearing end, didn’t recognize Jan
When she does though, the emotions are clear for all to see. They had known each other since 1972 and they shared a deep bond.
Watch the video below to see the amazing bond that can be forged between animals and humans, and don’t forget the Kleenex.