Chimpanzees in Labs May Get Endangered Status‏

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“Just received this exciting news in an email from PCRM.” 

I am writing with important news. This week, the United States Fish & Wildlife Service proposed extending full endangered species status to all captive chimpanzees in the U.S., including those currently being used in laboratory experiments. If this rule is adopted it could have a major effect on chimpanzees used in experiments.Chimps

Currently, while wild chimpanzees are afforded full protection under the federal Endangered Species Act, their captive counterparts are not. The proposed rule extends protection to all chimpanzees, including those currently in laboratories.

The proposed rule follows an announcement earlier this year by a National Institutes of Health (NIH) working group, which recommended that nearly all federally owned chimpanzees currently in laboratories be retired to sanctuaries. We are awaiting NIH’s final plan for implementing those recommendations.

The new rule is another step in the right direction. It is subject to a 60-day comment period, and, of course, PCRM is weighing in. As the Fish & Wildlife Service rulemaking process moves forward we will keep you informed.

For more information about this important proposal, read yesterday’s Washington Post story, which quotes John Pippin, M.D., director of medical affairs for the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine.

In the meantime, you can take action on our other efforts related to the use of animals in experimentation.

Very truly yours,

Neal Barnard Signature

Neal Barnard, M.D.
President, PCRM

Link to PCRM:-http://pcrm.org/research/action-alerts/

ALDF Urges Federal Government to End Research on Captive Chimpanzees: Video, Release of Chimps After Being Experimented On For 30 Years

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The United States and the small African nation of Gabon are the only two countries in the world that continue to use chimpanzees as test subjects in behavioural and biomedical research Such testing has brought little in the way of scientific breakthrough, but has, instead, inflicted a host of horrors on our closest genetic relatives. 

Tragically, many chimpanzees have served as research specimens for decades without relief, often confined to small cages with no access to other members of their species or the outdoorsconditions tantamount to physical, emotional, and psychological torture.  It is widely acknowledged that such terrible conditions irreparably harm these highly intelligent and social creatures.

Late in 2010, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) forecasted that a change in policy might be on the horizon.  After decades of scrutiny and pressure from animal rights groups, the general public and, increasingly, the international community, the NIH requisitioned a study from the Institute of Medicine (IOM) to examine the use of chimpanzees in NIH-funded behavioural and biomedical research. 

That report, issued one year later in December 2011, concluded that “most current biomedical use of chimpanzees is unnecessary” and suggested that future research on chimpanzees be limited and guided by the following three principles:

(1) the research must be necessary to advance public health;
(2) there is no other suitable research model available; and
(3) the chimpanzee research subjects be maintained in an ethological environment focused on meeting both their social and physical needs.

Following the IOM study, a Working Group was tasked with reviewing the IOM proposals and advising on their implementation.  The Working Group issued a report on January 22, 2013, which offered twenty-eight recommendations.  The NIH published this report as part of a “Request for Information through which it sought public comment on the recommendations.

ALDF, together with pro bono legal counsel from the law firm of Proskauer Rose, once again welcomed the chance to defend captive chimpanzees from the agonies of behavioural and biomedical research.

Although long overdue, the Working Group’s recommendations are an important step forward in the fight for chimpanzee rights.  Importantly, the report recommended that “[t]he majority of NIH-owned chimpanzees should be designated for retirement and transferred to the federal sanctuary system.” 

The report also proposed dramatic improvements in the housing of research chimpanzees—by requiring them to cohabit in social groups of at least seven individuals and improving the size and layout of their living space, as well as requiring access to the outdoors and veterinary care.  These changes to policy, if implemented, would help to alleviate the suffering of chimpanzees used in research.

But they do not go far enough.

To demonstrate that NIH policy is out-of-step with international standards and still lags behind the rest of the world in its treatment of chimpanzees, our comments included a survey of the laws of Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and Japan, which, particularly in recent years, have banned or otherwise restricted chimpanzee-based research.

Our comments also urged the NIH to embrace public opinion, as polls have shown that a majority of Americans favour banning the practice of experimenting on chimpanzees.  Moreover, we exhorted the NIH to follow the lead of other federal government agencies taking steps to provide greater protections for captive chimpanzees.  In particular, we highlighted the recent petition to the Fish & Wildlife Service to classify captive chimpanzees, like their wild counterparts, as endangered species under the Endangered Species Act.

Accordingly, our comments insisted that the NIH go beyond the Working Group recommendations and implement a ban on all future chimpanzee testing in any NIH-funded researchWith such a ban, not only would there be no need to retain at government expense the proposed colony of fifty research-ready chimpanzees, but such resources could be better invested in developing non-animal research modelsIndeed, it is our long-term goal that the NIH will forego the recommendation to explore alternative animal research models (such as genetically altered mice), and instead adopt more humane, ethical, and reliable research protocols.

Given recent trends, the NIH should seize this seminal moment in history and stop the suffering of research chimpanzees once and for all.  As the Working Group report conceded, “in light of evidence suggesting that research involving chimpanzees has rarely accelerated new discoveries or the advancement of human health for infectious diseases,” it is not logical, ethical, or humane to squander precious government funds to exacerbate the plight of our fellow primates.

News Link:http://aldf.org/article.php?id=2384

“The following made me cry, we have no right to lock up the innocent & perform horrific experiments on them. Why don’t we put all the rapist’s, murderers & child abusers to good use, instead of giving them a warm place to sleep, food, recreation, etc. all that we pay for…experiment on them instead, then at least we would know the drugs being tested, might actually work on humans!!”

Release of chimpanzees, 30 years after undergoing experiments

Uploaded on 7 Sep 2011

Las Vegas Activists Protest Backyard Chimp Permit

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“When the owner of Travis bravely showed her face, after the attack; I’m surprised anyone would want a chimp living next door to them. What about the rights of the animals? They are wild & shouldn’t be subjected to birthday parties etc. just for the owner to make money!! Wild animals belong in the wild, if you want to see one, go on one of the many holiday packages that allow you to see the animals in the wild!!”

LAS VEGAS (AP)Animal rights activists in a city already jittery from two separate chimp escapes this summer are protesting a Las Vegas-area property owner’s request to house primates in a residential area, saying the animals pose a public safety issue.

Activist Linda Faso said she and others were holding a demonstration next to the house

Chimpanzee

Friday afternoon, after distributing fliers in the area that featured a snarling chimp and a gruesome before-and-after shot of a Connecticut woman mauled by one in 2009.

“I’m opposed to anyone having a wild dangerous animal as a pet,” said Faso, a Las Vegas resident. “They’re cute when they’re babies but dangerous as adults.”

Town leaders are expected to review a use permit next week that would allow four chimps and a capuchin monkey on the property, which is located on a spacious lot in unincorporated Clark County, has large cages in the backyard and once held a permit for exotic cats.

The request was filed by Stacy Jones. A woman who answered at the home Friday said chimps are already living there, but she declined to give her name or comment further. She referred questions to owner James “Mike” Casey, who didn’t return messages seeking comment.

Casey holds a USDA permit for three chimpanzees and a small monkey affiliated with “A Great Ape Experience.” An online business directory says clients can hire Casey and the animals to liven up cocktail receptions or children’s birthday parties.

The listing also boasts a litany of charity work, including special appearances for children’s cancer groups and a school for autistic children.

But Casey’s also linked to a highly publicized chimp tragedy. For years, he co-directed a Missouri chimp rescue facility, where a chimp named Travis was bred. Travis went to live with a Connecticut woman shortly after he was born.

In 2009, the 200-pound, 15-year-old Travis mauled his owner’s friend, Charla Nash, who was trying to lure the animal back to its home.

Nash lost her eyes, nose, lips and hands before the chimp was shot by police.

The specter of animal escapes looms especially large around Las Vegas, where chimpanzees Buddy and CJ broke free from their backyard enclosure in July. The duo roamed the streets and jumped on vehicles before a police officer shot the male, saying he got dangerously close to bystanders.

CJ, the female, was tranquilized, but got loose a second time a few weeks later and was moved to a sanctuary in Oregon.

Clark County leaders plan to review the permit application in November after a town advisory board makes recommendations. County commissioner Steve Sisolak said he wants to gauge public reaction to the living arrangement, especially in light of the highly publicized escapes.

“I don’t think we’re holding anyone to a higher standard, but there is increased scrutiny because of the publicity, absolutely,” Sisolak told the Las Vegas Sun.

He also said Casey will need to explain why the chimps are living at a property without a proper county permit. “He’s going to have to answer some questions about why he didn’t do it in the first place,” Sisolak said.

News Link:-http://www.keyc.tv/story/19926977/las-vegas-activists-protest-backyard-chimp-permit

Buddy the Chimpanzee Killed In Nevada Because He Wasn’t Really a Pet

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” I have long been an admirer of Marc Bekoff & think he is one of the most brilliant minds when it comes to the behaviour & moral conduct of animals. I have asked for his opinion on several things, recently, Tony the truck stop tiger & was pleased to hear that he agreed with the majority; that keeping a lone tiger in such an environment is wrong on so many levels! Keeping exotic animals as pets is wrong, hence the post below. Read it, then listen to the audio video below, one of Marc Bekoffs & Jessica Pierce called ‘Wild Justice‘…makes you really think about animals & their capabilities!!

Animal Emotions -Do animals think and feel?

There’s a need for strong regulations against keeping exotic animals in homes
Published on August 24, 2012 by Marc Bekoff, Ph.D. in Animal Emotions

Wild animals are dangerous and should not be kept as pets. Consider the tragic story of C.J. and Buddy, two chimpanzees who lived in a home in Nevada. When discussing the need for regulations on the private possession of exotic pets in Nevada or elsewhere, it’s important to see the jungle for the trees.

C.J. and Buddy, the two chimpanzees who escaped from a residential Clark County neighbourhood in July, were treated as pets, but were and always remained highly sentient wild animals. In a natural situation, chimpanzees typically remain with their mothers, nursing, playing with siblings, and learning to forage until they are about 8 years old. A mother chimpanzee in the wild patiently teaches her young vital skills such as hunting, foraging, and using tools, as well as the subtleties of their community’s culture.

But the story of C.J. and Buddy followed a drastically different course: Born at a chimpanzee breeding facility in Texas, ripped from their mothers and sold shortly after birth, dressed in baby clothes and pampered as virtual children, C.J. and Buddy were propped up in front of cameras and thrust into the spotlight, and then, too powerful to handle after just a few years, eventually locked away in a backyard cage. Such treatment would drive a person mad and it drives a chimpanzee bonkers. We know that chimpanzees (see also) and other animals suffer from a wide variety of mood and anxiety disorders (see also and).

When you understand that an adult chimpanzee is many times stronger than any human and has the capability to crush bones with his jaws, you see the animal the Clark County officer was forced to shoot dead that fateful July morning when C.J. and Buddy ran amok. C.J.’s life was undoubtedly shattered as she watched Buddy, the only companion she had ever had, die, and it is because of this trauma that she likely acted out again, escaping two more times following her escape with Buddy.

Yet, it is only because of this tragedy that C.J.’s luck turned around, and she is headed to a sanctuary where she will make new friends in a more suitable environment. It’s the best outcome for her, but it’s a very rare outcome for most pet primates who are cast into roles as surrogate children or household pets. When pet primates reach sexual maturity and begin powerfully acting out many are locked away in a backyard or basement cages, dumped at shoddy roadside zoos, pseudo-sanctuaries, backyard menageries, or breeding facilities. These sentient, emotional, and intelligent animals, who can live to be 60 years old, often spend those years wasting away in a cage, slowly losing their minds. Others, seeking an escape from the profound and relentless boredom, make a mad dash for freedom, which, as was the case for Buddy, almost always ends badly.

And chimpanzees are not the only primates kept as pets who are capable of inflicting serious injuries; smaller primates also pose a significant danger. Even those individuals who have been subjected to painful tooth extractions can inflict serious bruising and break skin, and they can all spread parasitic, bacteria,l and viral infections. Macaque monkeys, popular in the pet trade, naturally carry the Herpes B virus that is often fatal to humans. Health risks are so serious that people in Canada who work with primates are not allowed to donate blood for fear of spreading known and unknown diseases.

There have been hundreds of dangerous incidents involving captive primates, many kept as pets, including the tragic story of the Connecticut woman (see also) whose face was torn off by her friend’s pet chimpanzee named Travis. Scores of children have been injured by pet monkeys, many requiring hospital treatment while worried parents wait to hear from doctors if they’ve contracted any infectious diseases.

Exotic pets still have wild genes

Travis was not a “domesticated chimpanzee” as a story published by the AP called him. This is a complete misrepresentation of who he was. Travis was accustomed to drinking wine and using a WaterPik to brush his teeth and while this may sound “cute“, asking a chimpanzee to do these things is an insult to who they are. In response to this story I noted that domestication is an evolutionary process that results in animals such as our companion dogs and cats who undergo substantial behavioural, anatomical, physiological, and genetic changes during the process. Travis was a socialized chimpanzee who usually got along with humans but not a domesticated being. He still had his wild genes just as do wolves, cougars, and bears who live with humans, and tragedies occur because these are wild animals despite that they’re treated as if they’re humans. To say there was no known provocation is to ignore this basic fact. Wild animals do not belong in human homes, they can be highly unpredictable (consider other attacks by famous animals on their handlers), and they should be allowed to live at sanctuaries that are dedicated to respecting their lives while minimizing human contact.

The Ohio Exotic Animal Massacre

Let’s not forget the massacre of exotic animals in Ohio who were released right before the man who lived with them killed himself. It took a public disaster and embarrassment over a lack of policy to awaken Ohio lawmakers. At the time the animals were released and killed, Ohio had no regulations concerning the keeping of exotic animals as pets but now they do.

Unfortunately, Nevada has set itself up for situations like the Clark County escape and even worse scenarios. Without restrictions regarding the private possession of dangerous wild animals, law enforcement officers will never know if their day will involve holding off a rampaging gunman or trying to stop a neurotic ape. Maybe the Clark County incident will help serve as an impetus for change.

As one of only six states in the nation without restrictions for private ownership of exotic animals, Nevada lawmakers are playing Russian roulette with public safety, and a pet chimpanzee might as well be holding the trigger.

Please contact Nevada’s members of Congress (see also) and ask them to change their laws.

Read the rest of this post here:http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/animal-emotions/201208/buddy-the-chimpanzee-killed-in-nevada-because-he-wasnt-really-pet

Wild Justice; The Moral Lives of Animals (sample) by Marc Bekoff and Jessica Pierce

Published on 25 Jul 2012 by 

A sample of the audiobook edition of Wild Justice; The Moral Lives of Animals, written by Marc Bekoff and Jessica Pierce, narrated by Simon Vance, and produced by University Press Audiobooks.
More information about this audiobook is available here:http://universitypressaudiobooks.com/detail.php/109 

R.I.P Pepper – NEAVS’ Sanctuary – The New England Anti-Vivisection Society

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“I received this sad news from my dear friend & fellow animal warrior, Carol Crunkhorn. As this was a personal email to Carol, due to her dedication to the cause, I am posting as is. R.I.P Pepper “

PEPPER

We share with you the sad news of the death of our longtime friend Pepper, 42, who died last week of kidney failure at Fauna Foundation Sanctuary in Canada. Surrounded by her beloved family and friends, both human and chimpanzee, she comforted and was comforted by her loving community through her final hours.

In her 27 years in research, Pepper endured—in one lab alone—307 knockdowns, 36 punch liver biopsies, 1 open wedge liver biopsy, 6 cervical biopsies, 10 lymph node biopsies, and 4 bone marrow biopsies. Only after her rescue by Fauna Sanctuary was the anxiety that had become so much a part of her personality quelled with kindness and tempered by her natural sweetness, intelligence, loyalty, and strength.

PepperEvery day, Pepper would enjoy her hot tea time, taking her cup to an isolated place and quietly looking out over the open fields and forests. She loved to play with the hose and to sweep up little piles of trash very neatly into paper cups for the Fauna staff to throw out. Curious about how things are put together, she liked to take things apart—and then politely hand to staff the pieces of wood or screws that she’d removed.

During the summer, Pepper spent her days and early evenings outdoors, looking for things to pick from the chimps’ vegetable garden, discovering the edible treats that grow naturally, or sitting in the sun full face to feel its warmth or under the shade of a tree, delighting in the breeze. Many nights, she would take a pile of blankets to her favorite spot in the skywalk, make a beautiful and comfortable night nest and, serenaded by the frogs and crickets, sleep peacefully beneath the stars. She fully embraced the joy of her new life and cherished everyone with whom she shared it.

PepperNow, Pepper will forever know peace. All of us at NEAVS offer our deepest condolences to our human and chimpanzee friends at Fauna on the loss of dear Pepper—a loss that stings us all. She has left us all richer for knowing her and for sharing in that far too short time she was given to be free to be no one other than Pepper.

Remembering the lab cage which she and others endured, brings shivers up your spine. That disturbing memory of what life had been like for Pepper brings renewed commitment to fulfill our promise. We will work until every chimpanzee still held captive in labs will, like her, have their turn to feel safe and free.

We send our love and gratitude to Fauna and to all sanctuary staff everywhere for the care they give. 

NEAVS is honored to have provided lifetime support for Pepper and we will continue that tradition in her memory. Pepper was the inspiration for NEAVS and Fauna to join efforts to establish a lifetime care fund for Pepper and all the other chimpanzees who endured and survived those lab cages. Members wishing to honor Pepper with a memorial gift can do so through NEAVS’ sanctuary fund and Fauna Foundation’s Lifetime Care Fund. Please mark your donation, In Memory of Pepper.

Link to sanctuary:-http://www.releasechimps.org/about/overview

Link to Fauna:-http://www.faunafoundation.org/index.html

Zoo in shock after baby chimpanzee killed by adult chimp

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“A very sad story indeed, but this sort of thing can happen in the wild, this is nature, at it’s ugliest!”

L.A. Zoo officials expressed shock after a baby chimpanzee was killed Tuesday afternoon by an adult male chimpanzee as visitors watched the attack.

The chimpanzee, which was born in March, was killed in a habitat with other chimps, the zoo said in a statement. The baby chimpanzee had been gradually introduced to the chimps in the habitat, but there were no indications of problems, according to zoo officials.

“Chimpanzee behavior can sometimes be aggressive and violent, and the zoo is sorry that visitors had to be exposed to this,” the statement said. “This is a heartbreaking and tragic loss for the zoo and especially the Great Ape Team who have worked diligently to care for the infant and its mother since its birth.”

Zoo staffers were shaken by the attack.

“I’m kind of shocked, and I’m very sad. My heart really goes out to our staff. It’s been a very sad day,” said Jennie Becker, the curator of mammals at the Los Angeles Zootold KABC-TV.

The mother is named Gracie, and she was being allowed to keep the baby overnight so that she could have time to grieve, the zoo said.

In 2007, a 3-year-old male chimpanzee accidentally strangled himself while playing with a rope at the zoo.

News Link:-http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2012/06/zoo-in-shock-after-baby-chimpanzee-killed-by-adult-chimp.html

Chimp champ Goodall crusades against deforestation

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RIO DE JANEIRO: Even in the veritable tower of Babel that is the United Nations’ largest-ever conference, it’s safe to assume that Jane Goodall was the only one speaking chimpanzee.

“Ooh, ooh, ooh, ah, ah,” the iconic British conservationist chanted into the microphone, delivering a series of melancholic bursts she said roughly translated as “please help.”

“I think that’s what chimpanzees would be saying if they could articulate it that way,” Goodall told participants at a meeting Thursday of the conservationist umbrella group Avoided Deforestation Partners. The event took place on the margins of the U.N.’s Rio+20 mega-conference on sustainable development, which has drawn an estimated 50,000 diplomats, environmentalists, policy makers and concerned citizens from across the globe to Rio de Janeiro.

The world’s forests are among the crucial, life-sustaining environmental systems scientists say are teetering on the brink of a tipping point. The U.N.’s Environment Program warned earlier this month that the planet’s systems, which also include air, land and oceans “are being pushed towards their biophysical limits,” after which sudden and catastrophic changes could ensue.

Environmentalists had cast Rio+20 as the last, best chance to avert such a scenario, and the event attracted a host of high-profile personalities, including Virgin Group founder Richard Branson and media mogul Ted Turner, who urged policy makers to take action on their pet causes. But the three-day conference was beset by bickering between rich and poor countries, and environmental protection groups have lashed out in chorus against the event’s final document, which they say is grossly inadequate.

Goodall, a Cambridge University-trained ethnologist who’s among the top advocates for the chimps she has studied for more than half a century, spoke movingly of the deforestation that has encroached on Tanzania’s Gombe National Park, where she began studying chimps. The chimpanzee population of equatorial Africa once numbered in the millions, but deforestation and other threats have slashed their numbers to an estimated 170,000-300,000, making the chimp an endangered species. 

Goodall said a recent flight over Gombe, a tiny 30-square-mile sliver of a park perched on the shores of Lake Tanganyika, brought the devastation of the surrounding landscape into sharp relief.

“The trees were gone, the hills were bare,” she said. Outside the park, trees had been cut down by the impoverished locals for firewood and for plots of land on which to eke out a living.

She said both the kind of “desperate poverty” that surrounds Gombe and, on the other end of the spectrum, the unquenchable appetites for consumer goods in wealthy countries, were to blame for deforestation.

“The unsustainable lifestyles of those not living in poverty is leading to the actions … of the big mining companies, the big petroleum companies and the big logging companies” — the enemies of forests worldwide, she said. 

Read the rest of this story:- http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/environment/flora-fauna/chimp-champ-goodall-crusades-against-deforestation/articleshow/14354346.cms

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