Rescued chimpanzees hug orphaned new arrival as he arrives in sanctuary

A young chimpanzee orphaned by the illegal wildlife trade is now getting a new life — and has been welcomed with open arms by some new friends.

The Liberia Chimpanzee Rescue & Protection, or LCRP, is a chimpanzee sanctuary and conservation center in Liberia, taking care of over 40 chimpanzees under the age of five who have been affected by the country’s illegal bushmeat and pet trades.

A few months ago, they took in a young male chimp named Beckley, who was left orphaned.

Thankfully, the sanctuary took him in. The LCRP assessed the young chimp and planned to introduce him to the Little Bassa forest, a protected area where he could live with other chimps.

The organization wrote on Facebook that Beckley was “not long from the forest” and would likely fit right in with the new environment, saying that “he was extremely comfortable and intuitive and fearless climbing.”

Beckley also had fellow rescue chimps who took him under their wing: the LCRP wrote that chimps Mary Beauty and Zacc bonded with Beckley, and at one point Mary Beauty comforted the young chimp when he started crying.

Finally the day came when Beckley was ready to go to his new home in Little Bassa — and he got quite an adorable welcome from his fellow chimps.

A sweet video shared by the organization shows the chimps greeting the new arrival with hugs:

All of these rescued chimpanzees have been left orphaned by cruel poachers, but it’s clear that despite everything they have each other to depend on.

The LCRP writes that the chimpanzees will now be able to “thrive with others in a natural and safe environment.”

In addition to being killed by poachers as bushmeat, some chimpanzees are also taken from their environment to be sold as pets, which also leaves their young ones orphaned.

“Chimpanzees are not and should not be pets or forced to live with humans,” the group wrote.

It’s heartbreaking what these chimpanzees have gone through in life, but we’re glad they have been rescued and can now live with each other in a safe environment.

It’s clear these chimps love each other a lot — please share this heartwarming story ❤️