A woman in Belgium who is said to have a “affair” with a chimpanzee at a zoo was asked to “change her behavior” but was not banned, a zoo spokesperson confirmed to People magazine.
In an email to People, Ilse Segers, Antwerp Zoo’s communications manager, said: “There is no ban to see Chita, not currently for any visitor… We just asked [Mrs. Timmermans] to change her behavior towards this particular animal.”
A woman named Adie Timmermans the 38-year-old chimpanzee had visited every week for the past four years, according to media reports.
As a result, she developed a close bond with the animal at that time.
“I love that animal and he loves me,” Timmermans previously told Belgian broadcaster ATV.
Her weekly visits consisted of waving to Chita and blowing kisses through the glass.
According to Segers, Timmermans had robbed the monkey of the “bonding time he needs with his fellow primates”.
The communications manager added: “He is an exception: he grew up in the home with people and came to the zoo almost 30 years ago. He still loves people… But for his own health, he needs to be part of the chimpanzee group as much as possible.”
Timmermans was asked to let Chita “be a chimpanzee among chimpanzees and not stay with him for too long and not get his attention… We hope she will in the future,” according to People.