Esperanza Verde Update / June 2017
Monkeys being released, monkeys being closed in and the Dalton, (5 cobalt winged parakeets) which we raised from young, finally got to see a life outside of a cage. The running of a wildlife rescue center gives a lot of joy & sense of accomplishment but not all of the decisions are easy ones and this month we unfortunately had to make one of the harder ones. You can read more about all of it below…
Lia, Rioma & Tisha (female brown capuchins)
The three females which were lured back into the cage after it had accidentally been left open are now released. They enjoy their freedom and are hanging out with the other capuchin monkeys. Of Selma (female brown capuchin) and Kaito (male white fronted capuchin) we have only heard that Machico saw them possibly with a group of squirrel monkeys at the plantation. We hope it was them and that they are doing well.
Mica, Kres & Maku (female brown capuchins and a male brown capuchin)
Micas attraction to Alexandra, our assistant manager, continued to stay strong and once again she managed to get to Alex in order to give her a ’love’ bite. It was unfortunately placed around the Achilles tendon so Douwe had to make some crutches for her to be able to move around. As we can´t keep going on like this we decided to catch the big new male Maku and match him up with Mica. They are now together with Kres, the young female brown capuchin we received last month, in La Sapa cage. It was not love at first sight, but at least they spend the first night sleeping close to each other. And after two days she was giving him a full grooming session. We hope it will work out, and Mica finally stops searching among us for a mate. Who knows, we might have the first baby capuchin in about 6 months!!
Monano (male woolly monkey)
The baby monkey group is just growing and growing! Monano spent some time in Lucia cage but has now joined the others on the outside. In the beginning we were a bit worried since he seemed to like following the humans everywhere but he quickly realized who his real peers are and him and Pashko seem to get along really well. At the moment though he is having some trouble with his right hind leg. Volunteers heard a monkey screaming and it was Monano that had gotten his foot stuck in a fork of a tree. A volunteer quickly got him out of there and we gave him a check up; nothing seems to be broken so we hope he will heal himself.
Ossi (Male olingo)
Since a couple of weeks back Ossi has not been back to his cage during the day. He was encountered recently by a local worker, so we hope that there are other Olingos nearby and he can join them. We wish him the best!
The Daltons (cobalt winged parakeets)
Luke, Jack, Everell, William & Joe are finally released! They started their journey back in September last year when they arrived here as small chicks. Hand fed by syringe they were raised by us. And in hope of not getting them to tame (we never petted them or let them get on us) they were put together with the non-flying parakeets and have been with them since. It seemed they were learning more and more to stay away from us. In the beginning they would still fly toward us at feeding time, but in time you could not even catch them when we tried. So the time came to do another separation between flyers and non flyers. We thought The Daltons should get their chance and together with the other flyers they quickly made their way out to freedom! Unfortunately it did not entirely turn out this way. On the second day, one of The Daltons was unfortunately caught by Axira (female white fronted capuchin) and killed. Because of this we’ve reviewed our release policy and birds considered too tame will be recaught. So by now we have two Daltons back, and two are still out with several white-winged parakeets. Let’s hope they learned and will be able to make it on their own with the help of the other outside parakeets.
SUST Animal Orphan Hospital
This month there were a lot of animals leaving the SUST Hospital. Even our long-term Lulu is now gone, although she is still been taken care for by the clinic-person. And Pinto is still a guest as well as Rabito. We had some new arrival, not all wildlife, but also two house-cats.
Sheena (tropical screech owl)
After some time in the clinic Sheena has now moved to an outside cage, where she can fly a longer distance in order to strengthen her wing muscles. Sometimes it is a bit hard for her with all the distractions that comes from living outside, such as interested monkeys jumping on the cage and even the wind! But she is eating well and seems to enjoy her new temporarily home.
When Sheena first arrived we believed her to be a tawny-bellied screech owl but after having her here for a couple of months we have now determined her to be a tropical screech owl.
Quintisha, Kohana and Timo (Collared Peccaries)
This month the turn came to the peccaries to be chipped! The only one that got successfully chipped so far is Timo (no strange thing since he is the youngest and tamest one & he has the smallest tusks!). Douwe, together with the help of Kayla, got him closed in against the fence with a piece of wire mesh and was able to chip him! Now only awaits the two bigger ones!
Lulu (young female two-toed sloth)
Due to the capuchins being in La Sapa cage the move of Lulu has, once again, been delayed. That’s just how it works in the jungle, you never know what might happen! But as we had another cage empty we decided to make the Roko cage ready for her. A bit smaller but a good start for a first outside cage since it is closer to the volunteer kitchen so we can keep a good eye on her. She is doing well, adapted very quickly and has even begun to eat her raw green beans!
Chili (Black fronted Nun-bird)
After treating Chili (with the splintered bone fracture in his wing), it still showed too little progress. The wing would have to be amputated, and if Chili would survive this operation and long and hard recovery it would still only be able to live either in a small cage or in a outside cage on the floor with other birds above him. After a lot of contemplation between our volunteer veterinarian Marlen from Germany, Alex, Douwe and Olivia, we could not see a future for this not tame bird and could not see him being happy with either situation so we decided for euthanasia. As always these decisions are one of the hardest to make. We hope people can understand, and how important it is to educate children and adults about these problems. The children who caused this (shooting him with a slingshot) simply have no idea about the pain they cause. We see education as one of our priorities here at EV. Kayla and Marlon form an important part in this already, as they go to the local school and explain to the children about our work. They do a great job as many rescued animals have been brought home by them from school
Yellow footed tortoise
With help of the local community we are able to save a lot of animals, this time it was one of our workers who had found a tortoise on his plantation. For fear of being taken by people he brought it here. And not a small one, almost 7 kg! The problem with tortoises of this size is that they are valuable for their meat and are easily encountered. After a feces sample we saw that it was without parasites so we decided to release it in the woods behind the family house where we hope it will not encounter humans.
Martha (yellow footed tortoise)
After several weeks in the clinic trying to get rid of various parasites she is now almost completely clean. And even thought she is not rid of all of them we have decided to give her some more space by moving her to Momo cage (the enclosure that surrounds the long term volunteer cabin). Once she is ready she will be the new companion of Pepito, also yellow footed tortoise, and Rincay, the tapir!
A surprise visit we did not expect: a house cat! One day a grey cat was seen at our plantation, and later near the garbage burning oven. Then some time later she followed one of the volunteers and we got her into the clinic. We asked around in the village if someone was missing a cat, but no one came forward. Very skinny and full of parasites we took her in. We have now found a good home with a local family. They said they would take her, but as they also had a male, they would prefer not to have kittens. Marlen castrated her (yes, you do say this also with females when you cut out the ovaries) and treated her for parasites and now she is almost ready to go home again. Someone also brought the male cat over, to be castrated, and to get to know Misha, before they go home together. Since we began to go to the village a few years ago as part of a deworming program, people come to us more and more for help with their pets. Through this programme we have been able to help with deworming, infections and castrations to keep the growth of abandoned dogs and puppies down. This has all been possible thanks to the ‘Susy Utzinger Stiftung’ in Switzerland, as they financed these programs as well as all the running costs of the Hospital.
Since the Guest house is now completely finished and ready for use the work has started on the storage building. The construction of the storage building was started late last summer and was paused due to the construction of the guesthouse. The purpose of the storage building is to have a place to store tools and the food for the volunteer kitchen. It will also have a roofed area outside which will make it easier to construct things during rainy days.
The crickets got their first offspring. Well done Kaspar, Nico and Rob! After we heard them singing for the first time several weeks ago we had high hopes. The outside-cricket catching takes a toll on all, as it gets harder and harder to find them. It is as if they know we are coming! So with this progress we hope we can put less pressure on the outside crickets as well as on the volunteers catching them.
If you have any experience from breeding crickets and could give us some tips e-mail us at email@example.com
This month the volunteers went on a walk in Selva Dormida with Geiler, one of the local workers. Also Bert-Jan from Holland has constructed a boot rack where we can store our boots. They are stored upside down so hopefully the will dry faster (and prevent monkeys to pee and poo in them!). A job many already thought of and tried, but finally it got there!
Since we have two Swedish volunteers here at the moment we also got to experience Midsummer, a tradition which is celebrated in Sweden each summer on 23 of June. And to mix it all up the day after we celebrated San Juan, a Peruvian tradition, where you eat food made in a leaf package, called Juanes. It represents his head, as this saint gave his head up to help people. We ate our juanes at the waterfall and had some nice relaxing moments in the water and sun!