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Goodall has been studying and saving chimpanzees for almost fifty years. This goodbye was a special one.
Jane Goodall is among the world's foremost experts on chimpanzees. She's written dozens of books, won dozens of awards, and now runs the Jane Goodall Institute, an international wildlife and environmental conservation organization. She turns 80 in April and is amazing.
Wounda the chimp doesn't know any of that.
Wounda, whose name means "close to death," was sick and dying in the Congo before finding herself at Goodall's Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center. Goodall and her team spent years restoring her health. In 2013 they released her to the institute's chimp sanctuary on Tchindzoulou Island.
Before taking off into the jungle in June, Wounda gave a great big goodbye hug to woman who helped save her life.
Of course, it's hard to know exactly what's going on here. Chimps hug and cuddle when they are stressed or seeking to console another stressed chimp. Maybe Wounda is nervous about her new digs and needs a quick cuddle to get adjusted. Maybe she thinks Goodall looks sad and needs a hug.
Either way, it's a damn good hug.
Soaring dramatic score and onion-cutting at 2:45.