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Please go to my new Psychology Today blog to see what I'm up to. To buy the book, Bonobo Handshake, please visit my website. To follow the adventures of the Lola ya Bonobo orphans, please visit Friends of Bonobos

Sunday, July 13, 2008


Introducing Massisi, who some of you have adopted already. She is Kataco’s size when Kata arrived last year. Fluffy, but under all that hair she is really skinny. She has already been here a month and a half, so I think the worst is over, and hopefully she’ll make it.

She is still too weak to do much, she stays on her mama Yvonne most of the day without moving except to eat. She is very trusting though, and holds her hand out whenever someone new comes near.

Massisi is one of Lola’s success stories. One of our employees at Basankusu where the bonobos will be released next year, went home to his village and found one of his people with Massisi in the backyard. He told the villager that it was forbidden to have bonobos, and that bonobos are a protected species, endemic to Congo. Ashamed, the villager handed Massisi over without protest, and now she is at Lola.

She has large sorrowful eyes, but they are not despairing. If she can stay healthy (she is too thin now to survive a serious illness) she will grow big like Lomela.

Here she is, next to Eleke. You can see how tiny she is.

Adopt a bonobo!