With our adult males, though, usually Redd initiates play. Kiko is often a reluctant play pal. It can be difficult to discern whether Kiko’s style of interacting with Redd is actually play or just him batting the youngster away when he gets annoyed with him. That said, Kiko puts up with a lot. Redd likes to put his face right up to Kiko’s while he eats, hoping he will share his food. (Here’s a little secret: Kiko never shares.)
Kyle, on the other hand, is much more tolerant of Redd’s antics. Redd is fascinated by Kyle’s cheek pads, long hair and big hands, and much of his attention goes toward those three things. We often see Redd grab Kyles hands or hair and shake them up and down!
Of course, any time another orangutan can occupy Redd’s time, Batang can have a bit of a break.
Earlier this year, Redd achieved a big milestone which really highlights his increased maturity and independence: a routine medical exam under anesthesia. The primate team conducts daily positive reinforcement training sessions with all of our great apes, and Redd in particular has been a stellar student!
Redd’s attention span is getting noticeably longer as he gets older. Just like with human children, who can sit still and pay attention longer when they are in first grade more so than when they were in kindergarten, Redd is able to focus more on training behaviors. He seems to enjoy learning and has even voluntarily allowed us to administer all his necessary inoculations. Redd is making great progress, though he still has temper tantrums when Batang doesn’t share her enrichment!