Classic cotton T-shirt featuring Ricky on the front. The graphic also features a background of a blue painting painted by Ricky.


Ricky was most likely born in captivity in the early 1980s, possibly in Sarasota, Florida. His past is uncertain, but it is believed that he was a circus chimp for the first decade or so of his life. He was castrated, and his teeth were removed, perhaps in a vain attempt to make it “safe” for humans to work with Ricky as he grew in strength and size. Like many performing chimps, his career ended by the time he was ten years old.

There is no retirement system for former chimpanzee “actors,” so like so many chimps in entertainment, Ricky fell through the cracks. At some point, he ended up living alone in someone’s garage as a pet. An animal lover who specializes in rescuing dogs took pity on Ricky and rescued him from the garage, moving Ricky to his sanctuary in Alabama.

However, Ricky needed the company of other chimpanzees, so Ricky’s rescuer contacted Save the Chimps for assistance. In 2007, Ricky became part of the Save the Chimps family. He may have gone as many as 15 years without seeing another chimpanzee, but to our surprise, he has adjusted to life with other chimpanzees much more quickly than is typical of former entertainment & pet chimps.