Aged 12, MOSES is on the cusp of adulthood. His physical transformation over the last year is striking: he's like one of those teenage boys who, when you see them after a break, you think 'wow, when did you get so big?!' Even alpha male Sylvester has taken note and sometimes grooms him. Moses has a complex character, at times calm and quiet, other times excitable and irritable. He's Bulindi's best stick thrower: if he's annoyed (or bored?) it's not a good idea to walk under his tree. But Moses has a soft side: he's an avid groomer and loves playing with infants. He took care of younger brother Araali when their mother Olive was killed crossing a road in 2015. We expect Moses to lead the group in a few years time.
Mirinda's youngest son, and younger brother to Gerald, MERRICK is soon to turn 4 years old. Merrick was named in honour of Nancy Merrick, one of the Bulindi project's greatest supporters. Merrick is quite small for his age, probably because Mirinda had her latest infant (Maria) when Merrick was only 2 and a half. Merrick's a curious young chimp and likes to swing around on vines in front of his human observers, back and forth, back and forth. His other idiosyncrasy is his habit of 'blowing raspberries' repeatedly through his lips. Consequently, we can often hear Merrick before we actually see him!
8-year-old Gerald is one of three young males at Bulindi entering adolescence. Unlike his more adventurous age-mates Jack and Araali, Gerald has been slow to embrace independence and was, until recently, rather a mummy's boy. This is perhaps because his mum Mirinda is an affectionate female who keeps her older offspring close, even though she has younger infants to care for. This year, however, Gerald has begun seeking the company of older males and spending time apart from Mirinda. Gerald has inherited Mirinda's calm personality, and we expect him to grow up to become a well-rounded and likeable young male.
Bulindi's beta male MURRY.
Murry is in his late-twenties. As a young adult, he rarely performed bluff displays and seemed uninterested in politics. In the last two years, however, his character has undergone an unexpected transformation. Though he remains respectful of alpha male Sylvester, Murry has assumed the role of 'policeman' in the group, quick to discipline unruly youngsters. Increasingly, he can be bad-tempered. With several young males growing up in the group, it appears Murry has no intention of relinquishing his role as Bulindi's beta male. Could he even be plotting to take over from Sylvester? It was unthinkable not so long ago...