There are many types of wonderful primates. But Primates Incorporated can only retire certain species. Can you guess which and why? Click on their faces to learn more about each.
Chimps aren’t monkeys, like Gorillas, they’re apes. But apes and monkeys are interestingly, both Primates!
Primates are mammals that share many unique characteristics. In general, they have hair instead of fur, a higher brain-to-body size ratio and more intelligence than other animals. Most have fingernails instead of claws. They also have finger pads, and opposable thumbs which give them the ability to grasp with their fingers and/or toes. Most primates, except for the more primitive species, are active during the day and rely more on vision than on smell. Because their eyes tend to be on the front of their face, they have binocular vision, meaning they have depth perception.
Unknown to many, monkeys are not apes. Great apes belong to the distinct superfamily hominoidea, and are genetically and physically very different from monkeys. Surprisingly, there are only 5 distinct species of great apes and over 100 species of monkeys. Yet great apes tend to attract a wider audience due to their genetic and behavioral similarities to humans. Great ape retirement from biomedical research has been a priority for years; however, monkeys have not received the same advocacy. Now that chimpanzees have been retired from research, it is time to focus on retiring monkeys since thousands are living in research laboratories and they too are primates deserving of our respect.
1. Great Apes
2. Small-bodied Apes (Lesser Apes)
3. Old World Monkeys
4. New World Monkeys
Note: The examples above represent the 5 different groups of primates. There are over 100 species of monkeys. It wouldn’t be realistic to show them all here.
Frequently Asked Questions
In order to maintain a peaceful and enriching environment for the monkeys retired from laboratories and the pet trade, the sanctuary does not allow the public to visit unless they make an appointment. Often there is a waiting list as the tours occur during nice weather where the monkeys can be viewed in their outdoor enclosures from a safe distance.
Since we take pride in our sanctuary and want to show interested patrons around, we provide visitation for one hour to up to four people per week and the tour is coordinated through a board member and employee. We also welcome volunteer work groups as there is always much to do at the sanctuary. Any help is appreciated! Please contact the founder, Amy Kerwin, at email@example.com for more information. Thank you for your interest and for caring about monkeys.
Monkeys are quiet most of the time while they perform their most common social activities: foraging and grooming one another.
- They all are collectively loud just before feeding times (primate “cheers” from excitement)
- The monkeys will be fed indoors twice daily – once in morning and once at night
- During nighttime feeding, the monkeys will cooperatively enter their indoor enclosures for the night
- They can be loud when encountering a disruption of some kind like a train or a flock of birds (may hear a few warning calls to each other)
- They are loud if there is a conflict in the group which usually sorts itself out in a few minutes
We will attempt to minimize noise by:
- Building enclosures as far in from the perimeter of the property as possible
- Planting additional trees around enclosures and perimeter to help minimize noise
- Primates will be housed indoors at night so no outside noise will be heard after 7pm
Wouldn’t it improve employee morale if researchers could see the monkeys live out their last days with dignity in spacious and enriching environments?
Retirement is good for the monkeys and humans.
Thank you for wanting to plan for the retirement of the monkeys under your care! If it is your first time retiring monkeys from your laboratory and you would like to be connected with other researchers who have retirement programs in place, please let us know. We would be happy to connect you so that you can develop a standardized primate retirement program without having to painstakingly start from scratch.
If you are interested in retiring a monkey from a research facility: we require a clean bill of health, a vasectomy for male primates (Ex. a long-term and gradual socialization goal for rhesus monkeys would be multi-male/multi-female troops at the sanctuary and we do not allow breeding), and a negative tb test within 10 days before departure to the sanctuary. We will create a waiting list of six months to prepare the environment and enclosure. We also do request funding as it costs a lot to provide specialized care to monkeys for the rest of their lives.
If you are a pet monkey owner looking to retire your monkey, we will discuss the situation and funding strategy. If a retirement commitment is made, we will create a waiting list and require a clean bill of health/physical from a veterinarian, vasectomy for male monkeys, and negative tb test within 10 days before departure to the sanctuary. If you are having a difficult time obtaining a veterinarian, please let us know, we may be able to connect you with a clinic to ensure the monkey receives a full physical.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your retirement details. Thanks!
Providing specialized care to primates is very costly. Please share our donation link with your friends and family to help support their lifetime care.
Monkeys are wild animals and thus need to be treated with dignity and caution. We let the monkeys be monkeys by allowing them to communicate with each other while providing them with plenty of foraging opportunities, balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables, food puzzles, and multiple environments to create a natural environment for them. USDA licensing requires that the public stay at least three feet from the enclosure. To ensure maximum safety, we will abide by a six foot rule from our enclosures when we give the small, supervised tours by appointment only.
Please do not buy a pet monkey either! They look cute and cuddly online but they can lash out at you or a stranger – and getting a veterinarian to help you will be very tough because so many are ethically against owning a wild animal as a pet. Sadly, many pet monkeys wind up at sanctuaries – they are harder to socialize because they have not been around other primates – and they leave less room for sanctuaries to retire monkeys from laboratories. For more information on why you should not buy a pet monkey, please read the book, Monkeys Don’t Wear Diapers by Polly Schultz.