Join Cleveland Metroparks Zoo's Dr. Pam Dennis on her trip to Cameroon for the Great Ape Heart Project! Dr. Dennis is an epidemiologist in the Zoo's Animal Care department and along with eleven other experts from across the U.S. has arrived in Cameroon as part of the Great Ape Heart Project (GAHP) Veterinary Outreach Trip.
A big thank you to Zoo Atlanta for giving us all of the great updates from the field! We have short updates posted below, but to see the full update and some great photos visit Zoo Atlanta's blog: Africa Ape Veterinary Outreach.
Updates from the Field:
Friday, March 8
We’re in Paris. The trip to the Douala Airport was harrowing but we made it. We are all exhausted. It’s very hard to leave such a great bunch of dedicated people. Read more.
Wednesday, March 6
Hard day yesterday, but it ended in a wonderful dinner at our friends Ainare and Javier's. Read more.
Monday, March 4
Had another great day, but had some GI distress so it’s hard to stay hydrated! It’s very hot and humid today though. Read more.
Thursday, February 28
The team is getting a lot done now. We did exams on three gorillas and one chimp yesterday. Read more.
Saturday, February 23
The Great Ape Heart Project Africa trip is going well. We had a slow start to the Pan African Sanctuary Alliance Workshop but are ready to start doing exams in earnest. Read more.
Thursday, February 21
Doing great in Cameroon! We may move to a different hotel today, as some of us have no air conditioning. It’s hard to sleep at these temps and humidity, but it’s hard to complain when many others have nothing – spoiled Americans. Here are a few of the rules we’ve learned: Read more.
Wednesday, February 19
Hayley Murphy (Director of the Great Ape Heart Project at Zoo Atlanta), Adam Thompson (Content Producer, Zoo Atlanta), Pam Dennis (Cleveland Metroparks Zoo), Ben Brainard (University of Georgia) and Gregg Rapoport (University of Georgia) flew out of Atlanta together on Saturday, February 16. The group connected in Paris’s Charles de Gaulle airport the next day. Pam Dennis let us know that the team arrived safely in Cameroon and were greeted enthusiastically by Ainare, a veterinarian from Limbe Wildlife Centre, before being transported by van to Limbe. Read more.
A Little Background on the Trip:
The trip was planned to coincide with the 2013 Pan African Sanctuary Alliance Veterinary Workshop, and while this group of medical and veterinary professionals is in Cameroon, the Limbe Wildlife Centre and Ape Action Africa are using this opportunity to conduct complete health exams on several of the chimpanzees and gorillas living at both sanctuaries. Joined by their collaborators from the U.K.-based European Great Ape Heart Project, GAHP experts will have the unique opportunity to conduct cardiac exams on free-ranging sanctuary apes, offering a better understanding of what might be considered normal heart values for wild gorillas and chimpanzees.