Burrito is the youngest chimpanzee and the only male of the group of seven at CSNW.
Burrito was kept in a human home during his toddler years, was leased to an "animal act" for two years, then returned to a laboratory where he was used in hepatitis vaccine research.
Like most male chimpanzees, Burrito has quite an impressive "display" -- he stands up bi-pedally and makes himself look large, then finds something to bang on as he runs around. The female chimpanzees get out of his way when he is displaying, and seem to be taking him more seriously now that his displays are amplified in the larger space of the sanctuary.
Burrito cannot get enough of all of the food at the sanctuary -- he is excited about everything that is offered to him.
Chimpanzee Sanctuary Northwest (CSNW) is located on a 26-acre farm in the Cascade mountains, 90 miles east of Seattle. CSNW is one of only a handful of sanctuaries in the country that cares for chimpanzees. CSNW was founded in 2003 to provide sanctuary for chimpanzees discarded from the entertainment and biomedical testing industries. On June 13, 2008, seven chimpanzees arrived from a private biomedical facility in Pennsylvania. Some of the chimpanzees were kept as pets and used in entertainment when they were young. Some of them were captured in Africa as infants. All of them were used by the biomedical research industry to test hepatitis vaccines. Most of the females were also used as breeders during their years in labs and their babies were taken from them shortly after birth. Now the Cle Elum Seven chimpanzees enjoy a rich social life in an exciting indoor and outdoor environment where they have choices to make every day. Each day brings new adventures, and we chronicle their transformations and experiences on our blog.