In the United States, hundreds of chimpanzees live confined within cages and the walls of laboratories, and they are used for research purposes for most of their lives. They spend decades locked up and away from the outside world, and often they are deprived even of natural connection with other chimpanzees. Of course, we can’t deny the importance of medical research, yet the way of life these animals lead is distressing and unjust.
Fortunately a non-profit animal welfare organization, the Humane Society of the United States intervenes to change the fate of these intelligent animals. After a while the chimpanzees will be allowed to retire – and then, they will be finally given the opportunity to live in a natural environment, climb trees and get to know one another.
The chimpanzees are very much astonished when they first find themselves in a cage-free environment and have their first contact with the outside world. Many of them have felt no ground under their feet for years, and they react to the new world with lots of uncertainty.
The animals shown in the video have just retired, and more than a hundred of them have been released into this reservation. Because they lived in captivity for many years, they cannot be released back into the wild. Many of them are already over 50, which is an advanced age at chimps.
After the initial shock, they slowly start to contact and communicate with each other. In addition to being the first time outdoors, most of them also see other chimpanzees and come into contact with each other for the first time, without being separated by cage bars.
Look at the way the retired chimpanzees react at their very first contact with nature.