Fight to Prevent Export of Ex Laboratory Chimpanzees to the UK

F. capensis_B27_Chimps-1    Recent changes in the law have designated as endangered all chimpanzees – those in labs in the US as well as those in the wild – ending the split listing that allowed medical research to continue in the US on these apes. This leaves the laboratories that have used them for research with the responsibility of finding them new homes and supporting them for the rest of their long lives. In a first test of the new law, which states that no animal on the endangered species list may be exported from the US unless this is vitally important for survival of the species – perhaps  breeding animals to start a reintroduction program-Yerkes Primate Laboratory is trying, with support from US Fish and Wildlife Services, to export 8 adult chimpanzees to an unaccredited Zoo in the UK. This is  despite a glut of chimpanzees in European Zoos and sanctuaries,   several sanctuaries in the US willing to take them, and almost unanimous opposition from researchers and conservationists.  Please click here to read an op-ed by Kibale Chimpanzee Project Director Richard Wrangham,  on the dangerous precedent it sets for potential sales of Great Apes by range countries.

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