project #1:
                             First picture taken of a drill in the wild shot  January 2000 on Bioko Island.


COMING SOON UPDATED INFORMATION ON LIZA GADSBY, PETER JENKINS, AND THEIR WORK AT PANDRILLUS AND IN CAMEROON!!!! Funkadrill himself will be launching a brand new page to his sight devoted to Pandrillus. It will include revised up to date information about the Center as well as pictures of Liza's Drills', and video clips from the ranch.
Funkadrill strongly asks that you support this Foundation. Rest assured every dime will go to saving Drills  when it comes to Pandrillus. Pandrillus birthed the "Save The Drill" movement with their dedication to Drills. The Ranch can really use your support to keep Pandrillus going.

The Breeding Center  (Drill Ranch)  is located in Nigeria along the Afi river. Pandrillus has a group of  98 drills which have been reproducing successfully for years. Liza and Peter  are leading the way in their field due to allot of very hard work. The unconditional love  they share for Drills has always been first in their lives constantly sacrificing personally for their Drills.

Save the Drills!
In 1993, motivated employees at the Hannover Zoo initiated the project "Save the Drill baboons"! This initiative supports the work of Pandrillus. Since 1988, orphaned young ones have successfully found a home there. "Save the Baboons" also fights against the destruction of the rain forests and for the establishment of corridors permitting the Drills to wander among the forest islands. The grown-up foundlings live in an area of about 5 hectares. Life there is almost similar to what they would encounter in the wild. Pandrillus is protecting them from their former enemies, the hunters, who, at present, earn their living as caretakers and tourist guides. This is a good way of helping man and animals alike.
Liza Gadsby Whitley-Award Winner

International Primate Protection League
VOL. 25, NO.1 APRIL 1998


A Crime is Committed

On 12 April 1995, 10 African primates in 2 tiny gift-wrapped crates were seized at Manila Airport. A gorilla, 2 drills and 7 other monkeys arrived on Pakistan Airlines from Karachi as 'personal baggage' of 2 Pakistani smugglers with only a "Free Disposal Permit for 6 pieces, monkeys" from Kano State Ministry of Agriculture, Kano, Nigeria. While that document was probably genuine and may be used for moving non-endangered species within Nigeria, it is not valid for international shipment of any animals, especially Appendix I endangered gorillas and drills.

Philippine Government to the Rescue
After attempting to bribe customs officials, the smugglers were taken into custody and the primates sent for safekeeping at the Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau (PAWB) Wildlife Rescue Center near Manila, maintained by the Philippine Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

How Could This Happen?
Details of the primates' illegal exit from Nigeria are unknown but Kano, northern Nigeria's largest city, has a notorious animal market and is serviced by several international airlines. Although the confiscated species are native to Nigeria, they likely came from neighboring Cameroon, where populations of every species are higher. Nigeria's gorilla population is estimated at only 150, whereas Cameroon's is tens of thousands. In recent years the flow of ape orphans from Cameroon to Nigeria has increased. Pandrillus' chimpanzee sanctuary in Nigeria attracted no new chimps from 1992-1995, but 10 orphans arrived over the following 2 years, including 2 from Kano, hundreds of miles from chimpanzee habitat.

The Wheels Begin Turning....CITES Case No. 51478
As publicized in the August 1995 issue of IPPL News, PAWB Director Wilfredo Pollisco and Wildlife Rescue Center Director Alma Ballesfin initiated steps to redress the case. Here in Nigeria, the Governor of Cross River State, the Commissioner for Agriculture, Frank Afufu, and Cross River National Park General Manager Clement Ebin, all wrote to pledge their cooperation to repatriate the gorilla and drills (Cross River is the only state in Nigeria where they live). Despite excellent care, the gorilla and some monkeys died in 1996, but the drills thrived. At the Drill Rehab and Breeding Center in Cross River we began planning their return to Africa. In March 1997, CITES Import Permit No. LSN/68/Vol.III/72CITES was issued by Nigeria's Federal Environmental Protection Agency (FEPA), and the Philippine's PAWB followed with CITES Export Permit No. 1711A-97. IPPL secured approval from the CITES Secretariat in Switzerland for the drills to come home. A Concerted Effort on 5 Continents With countless details to arrange before the CITES permit expired on 31 July, I was frantic here in Nigeria. Meanwhile, around the world, many others were doing their part: IPPL pushed on all fronts to keep the ball rolling as telephones and faxes in Cross River are normally out of service. In Australia Sally Wilson of the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) continued monitoring the drills' well-being and searched for airline sponsorship. Sarah Scarth, IFAW's Emergency Relief Coordinator, went from South Africa to Manila to help IFAW Philippine representative Mel Alipio. In Britain, Wildlife Information Network's (WIN's) David Dawson kept in contact with me and drill project vet John Lewis of the International Zoo Veterinary Group, while WIN vet Suzanne Boardman flew to Manila to perform final medical tests with PAWB vets Mundita Sison-Lim and Stephen Toledo.

Lufthansa German Airlines to the Rescue
The drills' repatriation was now a full time job for me, but with only weeks remaining before the CITES permit expired, we still had no airline sponsor! With the support of Eunice Bernard, Lufthansa Nigeria Sales Coordinator, the offer came for free transport from Manila to Lagos! The good news travelled quickly around the world as the IFAW team made final preparations with PAWB in Manila - construction of crates, paperwork and scheduling. On 28 July, after over 2 years in the Philippines, "Fidel" and "Ming" (named for President and First Lady Ramos) lifted off from Manila for the overnight flight to Frankfurt. Also aboard was Mel Alipio who, the next morning, combed Frankfurt shops with Lufthansa's efficient animal quarantine staff for fresh bananas during their 6 hour layover. By noon the drills and Mel were again airborne: next stop, Lagos!

Grand Homecoming
Ming and Fidel captured the imagination of the Nigerian public - as newspapers and radio heralded their imminent arrival, I scurried about Lagos (sub-Saharan Africa's largest city) to bring things together. Philippine Embassy staff were set to receive Mel. Sam Ubi and I contacted airport security, vets, the press and Lufthansa staff. Meanwhile, FEPA staff, including Director General Dr. Adegoke Adegoroye and CITES Coordinator Comfort Owolabi, alerted airport protocol to assist Mel, and cut through the flock of reporters struggling for tarmac passes to meet the drills! The plane landed - early! Dr. Adegoroye and I raced blindly down back corridors and dark stairwells to the tarmac. Below the giant wing, a crowd gaped at the gorgeous crates descending from the hold - Ming and Fidel were first off! Elaborate nets secured the crates to a huge tray enveloped by steam swirling off the tarmac as the sun's last rays pierced the rainy season twilight. It was as if the Ark of the Covenant itself had arrived! In a flash I realized all the work and care undertaken by so many people around the world. Every possible effort had been made from the Wildlife Rescue Center to this moment for the drills' safety and Lufthansa's attention was first-class. With the O.K. from Lufthansa Cargo Manager Yomi Osunniyi, I opened the feeding slot and a male drill's hand shot out to grasp mine. The crowd sighed approval and followed as Dr. Adegoroye and I rode the drill's cargo carrier to the waiting FEPA convoy. But the Nigerian press and BBC team insisted on seeing the animals! Sam and I still didn't know if the other crate contained a male or female but this was the time to find out. It was dark and raining when we finally lifted the mystery drill out for the cameras and realized it was a beautiful adult female - and she was pregnant! The crowd was thrilled and cameras rolled! Lufthansa Deputy General Manager Yomi Jones found two new travel kennels (as if Lufthansa hadn't done enough!) as ours were too small (we expected three year olds!) Two hours later we arrived at the home of Robert and Rosana Cessac in downtown Lagos for the night - the Cessacs donated chimpanzee "Micky" to the project and gave me key logistical support in Lagos.

The Last Leg - Thanks to Mobil Oil
Next morning I finally met Mel, who had been hosted by Philippine diplomats overnight. Thanks to Paul Ellison at Mobil Producing Nigeria, the drills and their entourage were bussed to the airport for a free flight in Mobil's private plane to Cross River. Calabar Airport was reported closed after a commercial jet crash-landed the night before, but our Mobil pilot slipped us in behind the crash investigation team after the runway was cleared of wreckage! As we taxied to the terminal, I glimpsed Peter, our staff, and government friends grinning in amazement - no one was sure we would really come! Ming & Fidel arrived at Drill Ranch to a rousing reception of staff, friends, media and officials -- plus the Jupeng Children's Performance Group, who danced and sang their specially-prepared poem "Drills Welcome Home to Nigeria". Mel handed over the still-boxed drills to Director of Forestry Colo Agbor and state Environmental Protection Agency Director Emmanuel Nyong, and Ming & Fidel were ceremoniously released into their quarantine enclosure, reunited in peace, at last.

Baby "Manila" is Born in Nigeria
Ming delivered a perfect baby girl September 14. I named her Manila to honor the place she was conceived and those there who cared so well for her parents. In West Africa manillas are brass or bronze bracelets used as currency through the 19th century - the word still connotes wealth and security. In December, national television filmed Manila's naming ceremony as the whole country continues to follow their story! Ming is a model mother and Fidel a doting father; the little family successfully completed their quarantine and will soon join one of our three breeding groups in a multi-hectare, natural rain-forest enclosure at Afi Mountain. We hope to release the first group back to the wild in 1999.

The Bigger Picture
Just as important as Ming & Fidel's rightful return is the sensation and interest it created. Nigeria is Africa's most populous country, and has an active press. Local and national media give the drills terrific support, but never more than this case! Ming & Fidel's story was shown repeatedly on a popular TV program seen by tens of millions of Nigerians. Total strangers stop me on the street to inquire as to their well-being! The story put wildlife smuggling on the national agenda, sparking editorials ranging from forest conservation to animal rights. Such public interest is critical for the long-term success of primate conservation in Africa.

Proud father Fidel
Photo: Sarah Seymo

Ming with newborn baby Manilla
Photo: Sarah Seymour
Keepers Bassey Itiat (L) and Victor
Photo: Sarah Seymour
Jupeng Children's Performance Group
Photo: Liza Gadsby

Drill Rehabilitation & Breeding Center
Housing Estate, P.O. Box 107
Calabar, Cross River State
Telephone: 44-732-465-326 Fax: 44-732-461-716 Fax: 23487220292

Tax deductible donations can be made out to:
Pandrillus Foundation USA.  
For more details email Pandrillus

Gail W. Hearn
Professor of Biology, Beaver College
Frank and Evelyn Steinbrucker Chair 1996-99

Appearance: The drill looks like a stocky, olive-brown baboon with a large head, an off-white underside, and a white ruff surrounding a hairless black face. Dense fur around the neck of the adult male greatly enlargens the look of its head and chest. The impressive pink, blue, and mauve buttocks top a bright red scrotum. A stubby tail appears above the buttocks. The hands and feet are broad and strong. The thumb of the foot is especially well developed. The chin of fully adult males is bright red.

Bioko Subspecies: Mandrillus leucophaeus poensis

Habitat and Distribution: The drill is found in the moist evergreen forests of Bioko and between the Cross and Sanaga rivers. They live in the Cameroon mountains up to 1,000 m and also in areas with both forest and Savannah components.

Social Structure and Food: Drills live in groups of up to 25. Sometimes multiple groups rendezvous forming bands of up to 200 animals. The groups consist of a single dominant adult male and multiple females and their offspring. Groups travel on the ground, but feed and sleep in the trees. Drills utter a sharp alarm bark and grunt while foraging. Other sounds include the marked crowing call for contact between groups and the croaking call of distressed juveniles. The dominant male will shake branches and bob his head as a threat display. Drills are omnivores who eat fruits, much herbaceous growth, roots, mushrooms, invertebrates (especially worms, termites, ants, and spiders) and small vertebrates. Drills have also been reported to eat giant land snails, coconuts, sea turtle eggs, and infrequently injured duikers.

Captive Population:
Zoos: The are currently forty-six drills in zoos world wide, although most are in non-reproducing groups. In fact, only the small group of 18 drills at the Hannover, Germany zoo reproduce regularly, with several females raising their young together. (ISIS)

Status: The drill is now listed as Africa's most endangered primate. On the mainland, their range has been devastated by clear-felling and human settlement. They are hunted everywhere as bush meat and it is not uncommon for an entire group to be shot as it takes refuge in the trees. The population on the southern tip of Bioko is one of only three known remaining populations. Listed as endangered by IUCN.
(Kingdom, 1997)

The Drill


Family: Cercopithecidae
Genus: Mandrillus
Subfamily: Cercopithecinae
Species: Two

  Leucophaeus: Drill
  Sphinx: Mandrill

These species were included in the genus Papio (the baboon genus) until 1989. They have been discovered to be genetically distinct from baboons, and more akin to mangabeys. They do share many features with baboons, including, most notably, size. As with most primates, their taxonomy is under dispute.

Drills are dark brown with a black face, white tufted beard and scarlet lower lip. They have a long muzzle with lateral ridges. Their hindquarters is naked and varies in color, which range from bright red, blue, and light purple to lilac and pink. Inner thighs are red. Males are larger and more colorful than females. Their skulls show a marked sexual dimorphism. Males average 28 inches in length and weigh around 37.5lbs. Females are normally 26 inches, 22 pounds.

Adult mandrill males are larger and more colorful than females. Their long snouts are red and blue and they have yellow-orange beards. They also have colorful rumps, which are thought to aid drills and mandrills in leading their groups through dense forests. These may also provide social and sexual signals. Males are about 40 in. long and weigh around 59 lbs., while females average 22 in. in length, 25 lbs. Adult brain weight is 5.6oz. Mandrills are the largest of all monkeys. Both drills and mandrills have very short tails. Both have cheek pouches, which enable them to store food to eat later.

Range and Diet:
Both are found only in West Africa, the drill in Nigeria, Cameroon, and the island of Bioko; the mandrill in Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, and Gabon. They are found only in a very small area. Both live in forests and have can have group home ranges ranges of up to 5000ha. Drills have never been seen outside of forests, while mandrills may sometimes venture onto the savanna.

Both are omnivorous, eating fruit, seeds, vegetation, and small animal prey. Mandrills have been known to raid crops and plantations. They will travel long distances (5-15km) and feed most of the day. It has been suggested that mandrills live in a comparatively food-poor zone, the lower levels of the forest which are the least productive part, which accounts for their long daily travels. Their travels are similar to hamadryas baboons, which inhabit desert regions.

Behavior and Social Structure:
Drills live in harem groups. One male can can as many as 20 females in his group. During the dry season several groups may come together to form one large group. As many as 200 individuals together have been observed. Males will emigrate and also can remain solitary. Mandrills normally form large multimale-multifemale groups with a distinct hierarchy. However, harem groups are not unheard of, as mandrill competition can be fierce. Dominant male mandrills are more colorful than lower ranked males. Group size can vary from 2 to over 200 individuals.

Both drills and mandrills are diurnal quadrupeds and can be arboreal or terrestrial. Adult males tend to be more terrestrial than females than females and juveniles, perhaps because of their larger size. Male drills forage at the rear of the group and herd the group away from danger. Mandrills will sleep in trees, in a different location each night.

Drills rely on visual and vocal communication, while mandrills also use scent marking. They are one of the few Old World monkeys to have cutaneous glands. Alpha males scent mark the most frequently. Drills have a series of deep grunts used for close contact communication, to get their group together, and to begin movement. Their loud, high-pitched "crowing call" is used contact subgroups that have separated for foraging. Juveniles alarm bark more than the others. Male mandrills have a 2-phase grunt or roar to round up their group. Drills have a "threat jerk," which consists of abruptly thrusting their heads forward, retracting eyelids, puckering lips, and raising the medial crest on their heads. Mandrills will "head bob" as a threat; and, like baboons, will yawn to display tension and warning. They greet each other (and others known and liked by them, like their favored zoo keepers) with a facial expression akin to a smile. This expression can be interpreted as a threat by some inexperienced observers who note the display of the mandrills' large teeth. Despite their fierce appearance, mandrills can be quite pleasant personalities and have also demonstrated impressive cognitive abilities.

Reproduction and Lifespan:
Drills reach sexual maturity at about 42mos. Females have an estrus cycle of 35 days and gestation length of around 174 days. Birth interval is generally 15 months. Lifespan is about 29 years.
Mandrills live longer, an average of 46 years. They are sexually mature a bit earlier also, at about 30 months. Female estrus cycle is 33 days, and they display a small swelling betwen their callosities. Gestation is 220 days with a birth interval of 17 months. Mandrills also have mating seasons which fall between July and October. This is dry season in Gabon. In captive studies higher ranking mandrills have greater access to estrus females and, according to DNA tests, fathered the most infants.

Conservation Status:
Drills have been classified as Endangered by the USESA. Both are hunted for meat. Drills' habit of "standing their ground" during an attack has made them preferred game in Nigeria, because several can be shot at one time. These are found in small, isolated patches of forest.

Interesting Drill and Mandrill Facts:
Because their deep forest habitat makes them difficult research subjects, and because they are wary of humans, drills have never been successfully studied in their native habitat.

Current Research with Drills and Mandrills:
(Note: The following are examples of recent research done with these primates, it is by no means an exhaustive list. This list will be periodically updated as more information becomes available. Also, though Mindy's Memory Primate Sanctuary DOES NOT support invasive medical research on primates, some articles of this type will be listed - both for information and as examples of the work that is currently being done with these animals.)

Lyle born at the LA Zoo


Dr. Andreas Knieriem

Hannover Zoo

Global Response



Story Of Loon The Drill

Earth Watch

Links To Primatology