Emma and Jackson vs. The Big Scary Ball

Emma and Jackson vs. The Big Scary Ball

On a recent bright and sunny day, an enormous red ball had been placed in the Big Outdoors for the chimpanzees to play with. A small crowd had gathered to see how the chimps would react to this interesting new toy, and everyone was certain that fun-loving Jackson would be thrilled with the giant ball. We watched as the chimps filed into the enclosure, and it was Emma who made the approach, her hair bristled. Looking none-too-impressed, she promptly knocked the ball to the ground and after giving it a few punches to get it rolling, she went back to the apparently more enjoyable pastime of sitting in the sunshine. It was surprising how long it took Jackson to check out the ball, but finally he approached. We’d expected him to be right into it, but he came up to the ball very nervously, cautiously poking it and hastily retreating when it moved. Sure, balls are fun, but this was maybe too much ball. He hung around, obviously interested in the massive toy, giving it a prod every now and then to get a reaction. Finally, Jackson had enough of the ridiculously large ball that had so rudely entered his domain, and he set about encouraging his spectators to join him in a merry game of chase around the enclosure. A few days later, the chimps were given a similar ball, only this one slightly smaller and less scary. In contrast to his response to the bigger ball, Jackson was thrilled with the new one, batting it around and even bringing it indoors for further playtime. I guess it just goes to show, bigger isn’t always better!

Amy, Intern