(Written by Debbie M. on November 25, 2010)
Caregivers spent Thanksgiving day preparing dinner for
the chimpanzees building the anticipation and excitement for dinnertime. The
menu was not unlike your very own I’m sure – they had turkey, stuffing with apples
and onions, sweet potatoes (with marshmallows), cranberry sauce, green beans
with toasted almonds, dinner rolls, and, of course, pumpkin pie for dessert.
All three chimpanzees came in and, amid much excitement, drank an apple
cider forage that was set up in the night enclosures before inviting them
in. I prepared their plates while they enjoyed the cider. I put a
little bit of everything on each of their
plates and Shannon let me know that Tatu was asking me to HURRY! I couldn’t see this as my back was
to the chimpanzees in order to dish out the meals but with this encouragement I quickly served up the first course.
Tatu went straight for the turkey. Dar ate up the sweet potatoes
with marshmallows and the dinner roll. He had some cranberry sauce and then
sent his plate back for seconds! Loulis tasted a little bit of
everything, but, he particularly liked the sweet potatoes and cranberry sauce.
He also enjoyed the stuffing but didn’t seem interested in the green beans or the
Loulis had several helpings of sweet potatoes and cranberry
sauce. Dar was happy to take care of Loulis’ and Tatu’s dinner rolls and still
asked for more! After Dar had plenty of rolls and marshmallows, I tried to
encourage him to eat something else – maybe BIRD MEAT or SWEET BERRY or GREEN
BEAN but to no avail. Dar simply kept asking for MORE BREAD! Meanwhile Tatu
had eaten several servings of turkey, including the drumsticks, and had moved
on to the fruits.
When it seemed liked everyone was slowing down, I went
into the kitchen, started cleaning up the leftovers, and prepped the pie. I
waited a little while to give the chimpanzees a minute to digest and then
offered everyone a slice of pie with whipped cream. Tatu and Loulis ate theirs
quickly and pushed back their bowls for another slice. Dar on the other hand
ate the whipped cream, had a small bite of pie, and then pushed the bowl back
for more whipped cream.