A female chimpanzee has an estrus cycle of about 34 to 35 days. While in heat, the animal’s skin on her bottom is pink and swollen. During this time, she may mate with several males. A female chimpanzee normally gives birth to just one baby.
A female chimp’s pregnancy can last about 230 days. Once born, a baby chimpanzee clings to the breast of its mother, much like a human baby. The baby chimp develops slowly. An infant chimp can sit up at five months and stand with support when it turns six months.
Basically, when a chimp is born, it is very helpless and has very little grasping abilities. Parental care from the mother is very crucial at this point.
A baby chimpanzee is born with a cute pink face and a white hair tuft on its backside. This hair disappears with age. A baby chimp does not have a full coat of fur; their fur grows in and thickens as it matures.
The baby chimp is carried by its mother on her front side for a period of between three and six months. As the baby grows, they begin to ride around their mother’s back. When the baby turns three years old, it starts to venture from their mother and explore independently. However, they never move beyond 16 feet from their mothers. Also at about three years old, they begin to expand their exploratory area and move further away from their mother.
Baby chimps are weaned when they are between 3.5 and 4.5 years old. This means the mother no longer provides her own milk to the young chimpanzee. The chimp begins to eat the same food the older animals eat.
At the age of four to five years, chimpanzees start sleeping on their own, making their own nests. Young chimpanzees typically travel all the time with their mother until they reach puberty. After this, the chimpanzee can live on its own.