Age at Arrival:
Ingende is shy, but loves to wrestle and play in the trees.
Meet Ingende! This three year old boy has been with us since spring of 2019. In a year, Ingende has won over our hearts with his happy-go-lucky attitude and adorable shyness. He’s an integral part of the nursery group, and is especially close to his surrogate mother, Mama Niclette, and his best bonobo friend Lolabu, who came to the sanctuary the same month as Ingende.
The Difficult Journey
Little Ingende has come a long way since we rescued him from a wildlife trafficker near the village of Ingende. He was found living in dangerously poor conditions, and his cage was in close proximity to the slaughtered corpses of other bonobos, likely those of his original family. An undercover investigator from the local NGO Conserv Congo found him after gaining the trust of his captor, and learning that the trafficker was harboring a baby bonobo. After several unsuccessful attempts, the team was finally able to confiscate Ingende, and he thankfully survived the arduous journey to Lola ya Bonobo.
Initially, Ingende was very weak and nervous around the staff at Lola. His time with the trafficker had drained him of nearly all his strength and this tiny little boy was in very bad shape. He was severely malnourished, and had lost a lot of hair. We were very worried about him after he came to us, but thanks to the love of his surrogate mom, Niclette, and the attention of our devoted vets, Ingende made a miraculous recovery.
Better Days Ahead
Although he had a rough beginning, these days our little Ingende is as happy and healthy as any of the other babies in the nursery. He loves to wrestle and tumble with the other orphans, and never tires of playing around in the trees. His favorite place to be, however, is snuggled up to Mama Niclette, where he knows all is well and safe in his world. Ingende has experienced more suffering than any baby bonobo should have to bear, but he’s come out even stronger for it. We hope someday he will be a great candidate for reintroduction to the wild, but for now, we are grateful for the love and joy he brings to our lives each and every day in the nursery.