The Monkeys

The Primate Rescue Center is home to over 10 different monkey species, who in the wild live everywhere from the rainforests of South America and the woodlands of central Africa to the islands of Indonesia and the sub-arctic reaches of northern Japan. They are a diverse population of Old World and New World primates, whose mannerisms, temperaments, and diets may vary, but who all share one unfortunate characteristic: they have been exploited for use in research or as fodder for the private pet trade, in some cases enduring years of neglect and abuse.

Because monkeys are much smaller than chimpanzees, much more numerous in captivity, and sell for far less money (a few thousand dollars for an infant, vs. $50,000 or more for a newborn chimp), dealers breed them prolifically and sell the offspring at exotic auctions or online to those invariably ill-equipped to provide them proper care. When the novelty of owning a monkey wears off, and the once-sweet adolescents mature and become dangerous and unpredictable, our phones ring. We don’t have the room or staff to care for all of these unfortunate castoffs, so we do our best to find them homes at other reputable sanctuaries. It’s always a challenge, and until laws barring the private ownership are enacted in all 50 states, our phones will no doubt keep ringing.