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Margrit the Bonobo

Discussion in 'General Zoo Discussion' started by ShonenJake13, 18 Nov 2016.

  1. ShonenJake13

    ShonenJake13 Well-Known Member

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    Today is a very special day everyone.

    On this day, 57 years ago, the approximately eight-year old bonobo female Margrit arrived in Frankfurt Zoo as a donation from a sailor who had kept her as a pet for some years. She promptly joined the established group at Frankfurt which at the time consisted of a male, Camillo, and a female, Camilla, together with a younger female called Eicha. Camilla was transferred to Fort Wayne in the US in 1972, whereas Eicha met an early demise due to ileus of the large intestine some two years after she and Margrit arrived at the zoo.

    Margrit and Camillo had four children together; two sons named Pan and Mato, and two daughters named Daniela and Salonga. After Salonga's birth Camillo was transferred to Antwerp, and sadly died there not long after. Pan unfortunately died not long after his birth, but Mato stayed in the group and proceeded to breed incestuously with his sisters and mother, producing many offspring. To prevent the inbreeding, something that would not normally be done had to be done; Mato was moved away from his mother to Wuppertal in 1988. Daniela left shortly after as well, in 1992, to Stuttgart together with her (non-incestuous) daughter Eja. And Salonga sadly passed away giving birth to her last child in 2004, a male named Kelele. Other than that the only other of Margrit's offspring left is her incestuous daughter Yala, who now lives in Berlin.

    Margrit has seen many faces come and go at Frankfurt. Currently she shares her home in Borgori-Wald (the ape house) with 17 other bonobos, and she has many descendants living in Europe, the US and now even Japan. As she was born in the wild, her arrival date into captivity has been chosen (by some) as her birthday date. And therefore, on this day, I would like to wish Margrit, the oldest living bonobo, a...


    HAPPY 65th BIRTHDAY!!!!

     
  2. ShonenJake13

    ShonenJake13 Well-Known Member

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    If anyone has any photos or anecdotes of the old girl they would be much appreciated :) here is a (relatively) recent photo of her:

    2011-03-16-11h08m50.272P6272
     
  3. Pertinax

    Pertinax Well-Known Member

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    She has seen mine as I visited Frankfurt several times in the 1960-70 era and remember the Bonobos well- the firsr I had ever seen in fact as their small group together with Antwerp's were( I think) the only ones in Europe then. Antwerp only had females so presumably borrowed Camillo on loan- an unwise move as they were not a good 'Ape Zoo' (although they had plenty of Apes) like Frankfurt and it was obviously Frankfurt's loss too- resulting in the subsequent inbreeding.
     
  4. ShonenJake13

    ShonenJake13 Well-Known Member

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    You likely saw Natalie back then as well :) she is also still kicking, being the second oldest female in captivity at 52 years of age.
     
  5. Pertinax

    Pertinax Well-Known Member

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    The group was I think Camillo, Camilla, Margrit, Mato and Natalie, possibly Daniela also, as I remember one female had a small baby that looked rather sickly and was covered in strange pustules on its head. The Bonobo cage in the old house was between the Chimpanzees and the Orangutans.

    Antwerp had either two, or three females- Kitty, Lanie and....?

    The next Bonobos I saw were in San Diego- Kakowet, Linda and their several offspring.
     
    Last edited: 18 Nov 2016
  6. ShonenJake13

    ShonenJake13 Well-Known Member

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    Depending on the year it may just have been Kitty and Lannie, they were alone there for many years.
     
  7. Pertinax

    Pertinax Well-Known Member

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    1968- I think it was maybe just the two females.
     
  8. gentle lemur

    gentle lemur Well-Known Member

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    I have one or two photos from Frankfurt 1973, but I can't remember if I identified the bonobos. I also have unidentified shots of the Antwerp females from '73 and '74 :)
    However it may take me a long time to find, scan, process and post them :(
     
  9. Pertinax

    Pertinax Well-Known Member

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    Would like to see them if you can do that.....
     
  10. ShonenJake13

    ShonenJake13 Well-Known Member

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    If you can Alan I will personally ID them for you!!
     
  11. gentle lemur

    gentle lemur Well-Known Member

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    Sorry to have made people wait so long, but I have just posted some scans of my old bonobo photos in the Antwerp, Frankfurt and Twycross galleries.
    This is Margit with baby Salongo in 1973.
    [​IMG]