Conservation & environment

Nkombo vs the Baboons

05 March 2015

Our day was abruptly altered when the cries of a chimpanzee echoed around camp. We all grabbed our kit and followed Mwiga and Butati into the jungle behind Banda 3. We found Nkombo all alone up a Mango Tree screaming alarm calls.

Nkombo has been the long-term girlfriend of Kalunde and was often found alongside the 'King Maker' but with his disappearance she has been sticking to a small group of females or roaming alone.

Now on her own she found herself in a very bad situation with a troop of Yellow Baboons closing in on her. Baboons and Chimps have very similar feeding habits, hence competition is fierce often ending with an attack. Nkombo found herself in grave danger, all alone with a very strong troop of baboons on her heals.

But the wise old girl, Nkombo, had a few tricks up her sleeve. Well into her forties, this was not her first encounter with Baboons. She cleverly used the crowd of people watching the on goings to her advantage. When we moved from between Nkombo and the baboons, she very cleverly moved out of the tree and ran screaming, putting us in 'no mans land.' With us in-between the conflict, the Baboons would not attempt an attack and as much as we moved we could not get out of this 'no mans land.'

The pressure from the Baboons started to ease off, it was getting late now and the Baboons lost interest and receded giving Nkombo the chance to disappear into the jungle unscathed and fit to fight another day.

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