For the last 18 years, a chimpanzee named Terry had been stuck in captivity, kept alone behind the bars of an enclosure at a Las Vegas zoo. When the facility closed last October however, the lonely chimp was given a new chance at life -- and at long last, a taste of freedom.
Terry is one of the latest animals to be rescued by Save the Chimps, a sanctuary in Florida that provides exploited and neglected chimpanzees with a more natural living situation around other chimps.
According to the sanctuary, Terry initially had difficulty fitting in --relearning how to "speak chimpanzee" to become social once again. But soon enough, though still timid, the once isolated animal began to make new friends, allowing himself to be groomed by them -- believed to be the first physical contact from his own kind he'd had in nearly 20 years.
After three months of adjusting to life outside a zoo and among other chimps, his rescuers decided to finally allow Terry outside to play on the sanctuary grounds, experiencing fresh air and unbroken sunlight.