Posts Tagged ‘chimps’

On Family Ties


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Chimps Suffering in Zoos

Bronx Zoo Monkey House

Although I had already known about captive chimpanzees that were self-mutilating in research facilities, I was surprised to read that similar behavior has been found amongst captive chimpanzees in zoos.

Research conducted by Dr Nicholas Newton-Fisher and Lucy Birkett show “serious behavioral abnormalities” among captive chimpanzees. The study was conducted among 40 socially-housed chimpanzees from zoos around the U.S. and UK and determined that the abnormal behavior, which is similar to symptoms of mental illness in humans, was prevalent despite efforts by zoo keepers to create a social atmosphere.


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Returning the Alamogordo Chimpanzees to Research

"Bobby holds onto a metal barrier... The white area of his arm is scarring due to self-mutilation."

There are nearly two hundred chimpanzees residing at the Alamogordo Primate Facility in New Mexico.  These animals, which were once used as test subjects, have been withheld from research for the last ten years.  Now, the National Institute for Health (NIH) wants to move them from the facility, and back into research.   Meanwhile, animal-rights activists want them transferred to a sanctuary.

In a special report, entitled “Life in the Lab,” McClatchy Newspapers examined the debate surrounding primate research, by interviewing researchers and activists, reading  scientific articles, and reviewing the chimp’s medical records, documents which the NIH released after a five year legal battle with In Defense of Animals.  The following is a list of the report’s major points, organized by “pros” and “cons.”


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