No sooner had we got Dixie and Silva settled in than another baby Langur had to be rescued. At the same age as Silva of about a year, this little male came to our attention via our rescue centre. He was bought in after being savaged by dogs, with many bite wounds. His owners had purchased him from someone for a pet, and paid 1,200 rupees (about 12 pounds) for him. How he got into the sellers hands we shall never know, they do not leave their mums sight till about 2 years of age. The new owners ‘care program” for his wild baby monkey? To simply attach the 4 foot dog chain he came on, to the front of his house. It didn’t take long for the local dogs to spot him in this exposed and vulnerable position, and when he was eventually bought to our vets for attention he was in a sorry state, not only from his wounds but of course traumatised and terrified.
Parker, Dixie and Silva chilling out
John explained to them that not only was it illegal for them to keep him, but that he was totally unsuitable as a pet and could never have any acceptable life on a chain, or on his own. Despite telling them of our work and the better life he would have at our sanctuary, they insisted they were going to keep him, as they had after all paid good money for him. A government forestry officer was then called and immediately confiscated him, and passed him over to our care.
Parker relaxed at Home now named Parker [keeper of the forest] with the help of Silva, he settled in surprisingly quickly. Finally losing the chain restraint and seeing and meeting another Langur, who was relaxed and at home in her environment soon convinced him that all was now o.k. , and he was soon eating well and even playing with her. Dixie was not such a help however as she just saw him as a rival for attention, and yet another monkey she would have to share things with. She has now grudgingly accepted that he is here to stay and although she still bullies him over food sharing , all three will sleep together at night cuddled up for comfort.
Both Langur babies are still wary of humans, although they will accept food from the hand and even sit on us occasionally. Being basically a shy forest species and having spent much of their first year in the wild, they will never be as ‘at home’ with humans as Dixie, who is quite happy to jump on even a stranger here, and then remove their glasses or earrings if she can.
Dixie by the Pool Dixie is now happy to take walks in the garden on a lead, although she does still feel the need to dash back to my shoulder to check in for reassurance, every few minutes, or if she hears a strange or unexplained noise. This continued caution is undoubtedly due to her early experiences when being used for begging. All the more surprising therefore that she has already been for a swim in the pool! This happened when she was fishing out the drowned insects from the pool side and saw a particularly juicy one just out of reach, she stretched out that little bit further then just took to the water and swam and got it. Undoubtedly her first experience of deep water, and she hasn’t repeated it yet. She was somewhat put out by the soggy fur and water in the ears after her swim, so is obviously giving it more thought before she tries it again.
Preston loves the pool All the monkeys are now back in the pool as the weather has heated up considerably. And little Kia , the rhesus rescue from Mumbia, has taken to the pool in a big way, its unlikely she would ever have had a chance to swim before, but is making up for it now.
Preston is back at his diving displays and climbs to the top of the surrounding trees, then waits for an appreciative audience before flinging himself into space and a noisy splash down.