In nature, primates spend most of their time foraging for food. It is basically what keeps primates busy all day long. To prevent boredom in captivity, it is recommended to provide your monkey with new toys and enrichment units every so often. The problem with regular toys is that monkeys get very easily bored with them but a device that dispenses treats is sure to keep their attention.
A few weeks ago I read about a puzzle treat feeder and decided to create my first true enrichment unit which truly didn’t take very long to assemble but it sure is loved by our capuchin. I would like to use this opportunity to share all details of this project with you, so you can create your own enrichment unit.
Materials used in this projects:
- 1″ PVC pipe (7″ long)
- 1 1/4″ PVC pipe (4″ long)
- 1″ PVC cap (glue on cap)
- 1″ PVC male pipe adopter (one end glues on other end is threaded for cap)
- 1″ PVC female threaded cap
- PVC Glue
- Pipe cutter (or metal saw)
- 5/8″ drill bit
- 25/64″ drill bit
- Small round file
Before starting to assemble your puzzle feeder, cut your 1″ PVC pipe to 7″ long and your 1 1/4″ PVC pipe to 4″ long.
Use the 5/8″ drill bit to drill one hole in your 1″ pipe and one hole in the 1 1/4″ pipe. Make sure once you assemble your unit that both holes can still line up since that is the only hole used to dispense treats. Use the small round file to smooth the holes.
Use the 25/64″ drill bit to drill random holes in both pipes. We’ll still need to to glue the caps on so make sure not to drill to close to the ends of the 1″ pipe. The goal of these holes is simply to make the puzzle more complex. No treats will fall through the smaller holes.
Slide your 1 1/4″ pipe over the 1″ pipe and glue the 1″ PVC cap on one end and the 1″ PVC male pipe adopter on the other end.
Your new puzzle pipe treat holder is now ready to be used! Fill it with small treats like raisins, cereal, bio-serv mini treats, pumpkin seeds, peanuts, yoghurt treats, …