LIVE

Safari Park Dvur Kralove and Zoo Brno air the daily calls between their chimpanzees online

By Kelli Bender
March 17, 2021 05:14 PM
Advertisement
Chimpanzees watch a screen set at the enclosure at the Safari Park in Dvur Kralove, Czech Republic
Credit: Petr David Josek/AP/Shutterstock

Zoom fatigue hasn't reached these primates.

According to CNN, the chimpanzees at Safari Park Dvur Kralove and Zoo Brno in the Czech Republic recently started video calling each other to stay socially active since both zoos are currently closed due to COVID-19 restrictions.

The zoos started the virtual primate playdates last week, each setting up cameras and big screens so their chimp troops can watch each other.

"At the beginning, they approached the screen with defensive or threatening gestures, there was interaction," Gabriela Linhartova, an ape keeper at Dvur Kralove, told Reuters of how the animals initially reacted to the video chats.

Now, Linhartova says that the chimpanzees treat the calls with the other apes like reality television.

Chimpanzees watch a screen set at the enclosure at the Safari Park in Dvur Kralove, Czech Republic
Credit: Petr David Josek/AP/Shutterstock

"It has since moved into the mode of 'I am in the movies' or 'I am watching TV.' When they see some tense situations, it gets them up off the couch, like us when we watch a live sports event," she added.

Chimpanzees watch a screen set at the enclosure at the Safari Park in Dvur Kralove, Czech Republic
Credit: Petr David Josek/AP/Shutterstock

Humans can enjoy these virtual chimp meetings too. Safari Park Dvur Kralove airs the video calls on their website and also posts the interactions on their Facebook page.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from the CDC, WHO and local public health departments. PEOPLE has partnered with GoFundMe to raise money for the COVID-19 Relief Fund, a GoFundMe.org fundraiser to support everything from frontline responders to families in need, as well as organizations helping communities. For more information or to donate, click here.