New year – new projects

15 January, 2013 § Leave a comment

I am meeting with Tallulah Bygraves of Bonobo Conservation Initiative – UK at the weekend so I spent some of last night and this morning updating my bonobo-knowledge and coming up with a few creative ideas for how we could develop a play for them. I forgot how much I love designing things, particularly for a species I already love.

For those who don’t know already bonobos are part of the Pan group which is chimpanzees. They used to be called pygmy or gentile chimpanzees the former is a misnomer since they have a large overlap in size with chimpanzees. They live in a very small area in only one country – DRC. They are female-dominant and the females form friendship bonds since they are often not related. A male’s rank is dependent on that of his mother and he will stay in the same group as her with a life-long bond. Possibly the most interesting thing about them is the frequency that they have sex. It is not limited to procreation and is conducted face to face as well as ‘doggy style’. They tongue kiss and have oral sex, they have sex with partners of the same sex and the only individual off limits is adult males and their mothers. They are renowned as the ‘Make Love, Not War’ primate and I have always found them interesting.

We are hoping to develop a piece with BCI-UK for secondary school students – a new challenge. I have brain-stormed some new ideas and hopefully soon will be able to get some idea of how plausible it would be to do such a show. I am getting really excited.

I am also going to meet with Beale Park this week, I am going to take our new volunteer Kyle to show him the spaces we use and the monkeys they keep.So things are ramping up again for MASC, we have a few new projects in the pipeline that I will not reveal until I have them confirmed. I am feeling excited about MASC again which is nice. Not much work at the moment so it is good to have something I can really get my teeth in.

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