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New adoptions

Tuesday, December 10, 2013


After four years it's time to say goodbye to some old friends from our ape adoption program. Jackie and Janet were both rescued by Ape Action Africa as young chimps and thanks to your support, have grown up into beautiful, confident teenagers who now live in a large social group of 25 other chimps. Yeba the gorilla has developed into a strong but playful young male under the watchful eye of silverback Nkan Daniel, and Avishag has given birth to her own little son Eto'o who is himself, a healthy and happy youngster. Each of these chimps and gorillas will remain with us at Mefou, but after an influx of orphans over the past year, we need your help to look after some of our most vulnerable newcomers.


Meet Chickaboo, Mbia, Cazza and little Chris - the newest babies to join our adoption program. Like so many of our orphans they each had a difficult start to their lives and deserve all the love and protection that we can offer them. Chickaboo was rescued after her mother was shot and had a terrible wound on her wrist from being trapped in a forest snare. Mbia came all the way from Equatorial Guinea, confiscated from a restaurant owner and sick with an infection. Cazza was intercepted by authorities whist being transported for sale by wildlife traffickers and baby Chris was given as a gift after his mother dropped him whilst running away from a rural farm in central Cameroon.  Find out more about them on our adopt an ape page.


Would you like to take action and support our care of these unique individuals? Adopt Chickaboo Mbia, Cazza or Chris today and receive a biography describing their characters and backgrounds, an adoption certificate, a 6x4 colour photo and the knowledge that you are making a real difference to their future. Adoptions make a wonderful Christmas gift and there is still plenty of time to adopt on behalf of friends and family. To take action, go to our website and complete the online adoption form and we'll do the rest! If you have recently adopted Avishag, Yeba, Janet or Jackie, don't worry, your support is still hugely appreciated and we will continue to update you on your chimp or gorilla for the life of your adoption.


Photo of Cazza courtesy of Ruth Mertens ©




Big Give Christmas Challenge

Sunday, December 8, 2013


What an amazing 3 days we've had on the Big Give Christmas Challenge - you have donated £9,920 which has been matched to give a grand total of £19,820!


Gift aid on UK donations takes our final total to £21,700 which is a brilliant achievement! A huge thank you goes out to all of you who have supported our ever growing family of gorillas, chimpanzees and monkeys with your generous donations, from all the primates at Ape Action Africa!


And a massive thank you to our charity champion, The Reed Foundation, for matching your donations.


Our little ones are celebrating in the customary fashion…..with bubbles!


Photo with kind permission of Jenny Brown ©



Rachel runs a marathon

Sunday, November 3, 2013


Following the tragic loss of our beautiful Afangui, Rachel had to postpone her plan to run a marathon. She is now running next Sunday, 10th November at the Broadway marathon in the Cotswolds.


Rachel will be running in memory of Afangui and raising money for the friends she has left behind in the forest at Mefou.  This month is also the third anniversary of the death of our Director Avi Sivan so Rachel will be running in his memory too.


Please dig deep and encourage Rachel round the marathon next weekend by sponsoring her on Justgiving. If you are able to join us on the day and cheer Rachel along, it would be great to see you there!


We have posted an album on Facebook in memory of Afangui, telling her story from her rescue in Equatorial Guinea to her happy time in the forest with Chickaboo and Luci.


Many thanks for your support as always - every penny counts in Cameroon so we hugely appreciate all gifts from our supporters.


Photo of Afangui playing bubbles with Chickaboo and Luci  © Marlene Haggblade



Sad loss of Afangui

Sunday, September 29, 2013


We are absolutely heartbroken to tell you that our lovely infant gorilla Afangui has lost her fight for life. She was taken ill last weekend and detiorated rapidly during the week. Our team have been in constant contact with Sharon Redrobe for treatment advice and everyone worked hard to help her and keep her comfortable. She died from tetanus, depsite being vaccinated against it, as are all our animals.


Rachel was with her when she died on 26 September, as was Babs, our vet, and Appolinaire. Rachel was due to run the Loch Ness marathon on 28 September and has promised all her sponsors that she will run a marathon as soon as possible.


Rachel and her team are devastated - Afangui touched the hearts of everyone who was privileged to meet her and the team have worked so hard for her this week, day and night. She was a gentle, loving soul and it was our pleasure to be able to give her a life in the forest with Chickaboo and Luci, after she was rescued from a crate where she was on display in a restaurant in Equatorial Guinea.


Rest in peace Afangui, you will always be in our hearts.


Photo © Ruth Mertens

Ape traffickers arrested in Cameroon

Saturday, August 17, 2013


Our Mefou Sanctuary is full to capacity, but last week we made the decision to open our doors after learning that a baby chimp had been confiscated from ape traffickers.

The little female was confiscated in Bamenda in North-West Cameroon by Ofir Drori and his team at the Last Great Ape Organisation (LAGA). She was being transported in an old rice sack, inside a cardboard box (pictured right), which was strapped to the back of the traffickers’ motorbike.

The baby, who is called Cazza, arrived at our Mefou Sanctuary with no physical injuries. Although frightened and dehydrated, she is now eating well so it looks like LAGA found her just in time. While her traffickers face charges in court, Cazza will need 24-hour care from our team to recover from her ordeal. Eventually she will be introduced to other chimps and her life will be infinitely better than if she had reached her destination on the back of the traffickers' bike. Sadly though, she has lost her wild family and will need care for the rest of her life.

We don’t ever want to turn our backs on orphans like Cazza, but we have recently lost some significant funding and urgently need your help. You can take action and help care for our babies by making a gift today here on our website. Small monthly donations are a great way to help and can be set up via direct debit on our Justgiving page. Alternatively, if you are in the UK or the US you can send payments directly to our bank account (which is cheaper for us) by emailing us at Every penny counts in Cameroon and just £3 will feed a baby for a day. If you're in the UK, you can text MILK 23 £3 to 70070 and provide Cazza with her next meal. Thank you!


Photo ©LAGA, used with kind permission



Adult chimpanzee adopts us

Saturday, August 17, 2013


Brenda is our latest arrival and her story is remarkable because she found her way to the sanctuary on her own! We had several sightings of an adult female chimp near one of our enclosures a few weeks ago, much to the excitement of Tommy and his group of chimps inside.


After each of her visits she would disappear, so we couldn't get near her until last week when she jumped right into the enclosure! Our team acted quickly and moved the excited resident group into their satellite cage to prevent disease transmission. Our head vet, Biblila Tafon then darted Brenda so she could be safely moved to another satellite cage. Once she is cleared from quarantine Brenda will be able to live with her chosen group.


Many thanks to volunteer Dawn Trakman for the photo.




Beautiful limited edition portraits now available in our store

Wednesday, July 24, 2013


Andy Short has drawn beauftiful portraits of Shufai, Nona and Tupuri and limited edition prints are now availble in our online store.


The portraits are printed on bamboo paper using archival ink and mounted on acid free board. Each print is signed by Andy and comes with a limited edition certificate.


Andy is very kindly donating 25% of his profits to Ape Action Africa.


You can see more of Andy's beautiful art on his website.





Shufai September

Monday, July 1, 2013

Shufai September!


Shufai is a little hero who has been through so much in his short life that he has come to represent all the animals living at Ape Action Africa with his strength, courage and hope for the future. He has suffered terribly at the hands of man with serious injuries when his mother was killed for meat, injuries which finally resulted in him losing the lower half of his left arm this year. Yet every time he amazes us, bouncing back and turning to trust once more the people who love him. Physically, Shufai has suffered more than most but his story is repeated by the animals in our care so we thought it was only right that he should be our team leader for Shufai September!


Join in the fun during Shufai September and become part of a successful team raising money to help us build a quarantine facility! You can choose to do whatever you want during September to raise money and awareness about what's happening to Shufai's cousins in the wild. How about a cake sale, sponsored run, sit in a bath of beans, abseiling, shave your head?! You must have more exciting ideas so please do join our event on Facebook and tell us what you'll be getting up to for Shufai September! So spread the word, gather your sponsors, and have a great time raising money in honour of Shufai and all his friends!


The finale of Shufai September is on 29 September at the Loch Ness marathon! Our Director, Rachel Hogan, is leading by example and is training hard as we speak for the marathon. She is running in all weathers and conditions in Cameroon – torrential rain, baking sun, forest mud, city roads! So if you can't join us with a fundraiser in September, please help Rachel and encourage her during her training by sponsoring Rachel on her Justgiving page.


Neil Maddison, one of our trustees, is joining Rachel in the marathon and Shufai's vet team, Sharon Redrobe and Sandra Corr, Nicky Robertson from Mendip Media and last but certainly not least Rachel's Mum Jan Hogan are all running the 10k in Loch Ness too!


September 29th has a special place in our hearts because it’s the birthday of our previous director, Avi Sivan and Rachel will also be running the marathon in his memory.


It’s easy to join in the fun – we’ve set up an event for Shufai September on Justgiving so all you need to do is set up your page, choose Shufai September as the event you are raising funds for and share your page with your friends and family! 


You can keep up with news about your fellow Shufai September team members by joining our Facebook event.


We need a quarantine facility because in the last 18 months, we have become home to 3 more gorillas and 3 infant chimpanzees. We are at capacity in our enclosures so to give our infant gorillas their own space, we had to build an enclosure attached to what was our quarantine cage. So we now have no quarantine facilities, which is a major problem for us. You can help us build a quarantine area so that when the next inevitable victims of the illegal bushmeat trade arrive, we can accommodate them safely until all health checks have been successfully carried out. 


Good luck and thank you!


Photo © Simon Galloway, Bristol Post 



Online Store

Sunday, May 19, 2013


We are very excited to launch our online store of Ape Action Africa goodies! All proceeds from the shop will go directly to Cameroon so you can help us by shouting out loud about Ape Action Africa and conrtibuting towards food, medical supplies and carers' salaries.


Hop over to our store and see what's in stock:

  • T-shirts
  • Postcards
  • Shufai bumper stickers
  • Wrist bands

.......happy shopping!


We've got some really exciting things in the pipeline so watch this space for more products that we hope you wil love and will help our gorillas, chimpanzees and monkeys!


We gladly accept all major credit cards and PayPal payments. All payments are made through PayPal checkout but you don't need to have a PayPal account to buy from us.


If you are making a purchase and wondering who Cameroon Wildlife Aid Fund is on Paypal, that's us! We changed our working name to Ape Action Africa in 2009 but our registered charity name is still Cameroon Wildlife Aid Fund....and it will pop up on Paypal and confirmation emails from them so we want to reassure you that it's the same organisation.


If you've got any queries at all about our store or suggestions of products you'd like to see, we'd love to hear from you at




First peek at Jasmine's baby

Wednesday, May 1, 2013


This is the first peek at Jasmine's baby that we have been able to share with you because she is being a good mum and keeping her little one close! Mother and baby are doing really well and Eto'o is still excited about his new playmate.  We will bring you more photos and news as soon as possible....we still don't know the sex of the baby, we're waiting patiently to see without disturbing them both so it's a bit tricky!


Many thanks to Ryan Janks, one of our volunteers, for patiently waiting to take this photo and for sharing it with us.










Gorilla baby

Sunday, April 21, 2013


Great news from the forest this weekend - Jasmine, one of our gorillas, has had a baby! She is being a very protective mum so we don't know the sex of her little one and our guys haven't been able to get a photo yet - she's holding him/her very close to her and she disappears into the forest when people try to take photos.


It's always an anxious time when one of our orphans gives birth because they have not usually had the benefit of seeing other mothers in their family group with youngsters. Jasmine has seen Avishag very successfully mother Eto'o and she seems to be following in her footsteps in being very protective and loving with her baby. Her baby is feeding well so the news is good so far.


Our youngest gorilla, Eto'o, is beside himself with excitement as he knows he's got a playmate and is following Jasmine everywhere! Eto'o shares his father, Bobo, with Jasmine's baby and his mother is Avishag. He's five years old and he's very playful with the adults so when the little one is running around, it will be great for both of them to have each other.


Whilst we wait for a photo of Jasmine with her baby, we thought you'd like this photo of her....with many thanks to Ian Bickerstaff for sharing it with us.


It is not our policy to breed our animals because as a rescue sanctuary, we can't afford the space or money to grow our populations by breeding. But as with humans, contraception doesn't have a 100% success rate!


Photo © Ian Bickerstaff



Helping Endangered Primates in Cameroon