It indeed has been 16 years since this large female was rescued, confiscated in Kinshasa and transferred to our Center in Lubumbashi.
Arrived at J.A.C.K. in August 2006, SHASA survived the arson that we experienced in September 2006 because our action disturbed all the traffickers of the city who made money on the backs of these poor innocent creatures.
Up to now, SHASA is the second oldest female at J.A.C.K. and she has three particularities:
- She is one-eyed: the left eye is still there but pushed hard into the back of the eyelid due to an accident that occurred during the seizure. Seeing the arrival of the police and the environmental Authorities, the trafficker ran away and hit the bag containing the baby chimpanzee against a car. When removing the animal from the bag, the inspectors discovered the bloody left eye and a veterinarian immediately gave her the needed treatment;
- She has very long limbs and could belong to a rare subspecies of chimpanzee.
In fact, since Shasa is from northern DRC, we think she belongs to the subspecies called “Bili Apes” (named after a local Congolese town) known to have a totally different culture than the common chimpanzees. Bili Apes are ground-nesting chimpanzees (they don’t build their nests in trees) and are said to have a “lion-eating reputation”;
- She knows how to swim, which is exceptional because chimpanzees are known to have heavy bones and sink when they jump into the water.
SHASA arrived at J.A.C.K. very small, diminished by her injured eye. But 16 years later, she has become an imposing female in her group. we are proud of what she has become today!
HAPPY ANNIVERSARY, BEAUTIFUL SHASA