Monkey World assists governments around the world to stop the smuggling of primates from the wild.

At the Centre refugees of this illegal trade as well as those that have suffered abuse or neglect are rehabilitated into natural living groups.

Rescue & Rehabilitation
Monkey World | Ape Rescue Centre

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Winter 2002

Undercover in SE Asia

During the summer Jim and Alison Cronin conducted an undercover investigation along with their colleagues from the Pingtung Rescue Centre in Taiwan, Dr Kurtis Pei and Ms Vivian Lin. The team wanted to find out the availability and extent of the illegal trade in gibbons and orangutans in SE Asia. This is part of an on-going investigation and as such the details of the locations are not identified as future operations are planned.

Based upon their experiences in Taiwan, the team knew that the illegal trade in gibbons and orangutans was common as they had encountered illegal apes kept as pets as well as shipments of primates that had been confiscated off of boats by Taiwanese Customs authorities. On this trip they decided to head for Vietnam and Thailand –two countries that were notorious for the illegal trade in wildlife.

In Vietnam the team started in Saigon where in the past they had been offered golden-cheeked gibbons (Hylobates gabriellae) and black-shanked douc langurs (Pygathrix nigripes) for sale. Starting in some city markets, it wasn't long before vendors were happy to offer macaques, lorises, and gibbons for sale. In one market stall three golden-cheeked gibbons were offered to the team for US $280 each. Two of the young gibbons were so small that is was clear that they had just been taken from the wild and the third was 1-2 years old. They asked the vendor if he would be able to get more gibbons to make pairs and the answer was yes, it would take one week.

Then it was onto an amusement park where there was a small walk through animal area. At first they thought that they were not going to find anything of interest at the amusement park but then the team was shocked by their discovery. As they walked through the animal exhibit they were confronted with some of the world's rarest gibbons. To make matters worse the gibbons were chained around the neck with a one-metre piece of chain tying them to a tree. The gibbons were not able to move around, come in contact with each other, or get away from people throwing things at them. It was a desperate situation.

Then Alison spotted a shadowy figure moving around in the back of a very dark and distant cage. Upon further investigation it turned out to be two sub-adult female orangutans. At this point the team were very interested to learn more about the primates at the park and went in search of a keeper. The amusement park staff were very helpful and when asked if they could be taken to see the orangutans, the staff said no problem and brought out two more babies, this time males, for Jim and Alison to play with! There were no adult orangutans at the park yet mysteriously they had a ready supply of youngsters.

Next stop Thailand. Prior to the journey, the Cronin's had learned about an amusement park that had orangutan "boxing" matches. Once again the team were surprised to find more than half a dozen sub-adult orangutans (with no adults in sight) but nothing could have prepared them for the spectacle they were about to witness. In a crowded stadium, two orangutans were lead out dressed in colourful silks to a professional boxing ring. The corner seconds as well as the round announcer jobs were given to a baby orangutan and two scrawny chimpanzees. The orangutans had a mock Thai boxing match, which was of course won by knock out, and the looser was carried away on a stretcher by the chimpanzees. Even though many in the audience thought the show was amusing, one should remember that these are endangered wild apes that are likely to have been smuggled from the wild for the entertainment industry. What looks like fun on stage should be compared to the dismal life of training sessions where animals are beaten into submission and then left in tiny barren cages to wait for the next show. Sadly for the orangutans and visiting public the great apes are also encouraged to sit with and kiss people after the show. This means that the orangutans are exposed to a world of dangerous diseases such as tuberculosis.

After the boxing match the team headed for a reptile park where they had heard of rumours that primates were being exploited. At the entrance Jim and Alison were confronted with a photographic studio that offered pictures with tigers, chimpanzees and orangutans. It was decided to come back to the studios and first have a look around the "reptile" park. Much to their surprise, the team found a huge park filled with wild animals from around the world. It became clear that the park existed purely to exploit the animals.

  • Chimp cages were two inches deep in algae and slim,
  • The monkey cages were "cleaned" by throwing a bucket of disinfectant over the cowering animals,
  • Some of the rarest gibbons in the world had their teeth knocked out so that eight of them could be kept in one cage without harming each other, and
  • Baby gibbons, chimps, and orangutans were torn from their mothers to become the next cute photo opportunity.

It was a zoological nightmare. As the team headed for the exit one last check was made on the photo studios. The baby orangutan that had been there earlier in the day was missing so the team split up to find him. What they found was devastating. The reality of the situation was that the orangutan lived in an empty cage with a chain around his ankle. The chain was so short that when he was found lying down, his foot hung two feet off the ground. Out of his fancy clothing the young orangutan was totally bald and everyone was shocked by the reality of the animal photo industry.

Primate Update by Jeremy Keeling, Lee Butler, Tim Morphew, and Paula Walling


Sally – She is still the boss of the group and has become good friends with Lulu. Seamus is her little boy and they sleep together most nights. Sometimes Sally plays and grooms with Çarli or Tutti however, she rarely interacts with Johni.

Lulu – She is a very happy chimp and is friends with everyone in the group. When Sally is around Lulu is desperate to be her best friend and cannot do enough to show her alliance. Lulu is very active and now spends a great deal of time outside.

Çarli – He is great friends with Seamus, Johni and Tutti and the youngsters enjoy his caring nature. Çarli makes sure that Sally and Lulu are also happy with him but at the same time he cannot resist teasing Sally from time to time.

Seamus – He behaves like a professional thug. Seamus makes sure that he is always in on any action and can quickly become a green-eyed monster if anyone gets more attention than he does.

Johni – She is a quiet individual that nevertheless has strong opinions. Johni is very aware of the older chimps and makes sure that she avoids getting involved in any confrontations.

Tutti – She is the smallest chimp in the Nursery yet she is very ambitious and does not give up if she wants something. Tutti is a young lady who believes there in only one rule in life – hers!

Ben – He is a very sweet and quiet character. Over the past few months living along side of Paddy's group, Ben has grown in confidence and is now playing more like a chimp. He is now eating loads of solid food as well as the three milk drinks per day.

Pip – She is a very strong willed and focused character. Living along side of Paddy's group, Pip has begun to interact with the adult chimps through the protective barrier. She is very close to Ben and the two spend all of their time together.


Tuan – He is the boss of the group and appears to love his new life. He gets along well with everyone except for Amy. Tuan is especially close with Gordon and the two men spend a great deal of time together.

Gordon – He is growing in both size and maturity. With Tuan as his new best friend he is learning a lot about how to get along with the ladies and enjoys playing with everyone. Gordon is very close with his mother Amy and they sleep together every night.

Amy – She is very independent and does not bother getting involved with anyone other than Gordon. Amy is still not sure about Tuan and avoids him most of the time.

RoRo – She has a very strong personality and usually gets what she wants. When Tuan first arrived RoRo got used to being his number one lady but now seems to accept that Tuan looks at the other ladies from time to time. RoRo has a soft spot for Lucky.

Hsiao-lan – She is a very quiet member of the group and is usually found off on her own foraging in their two-acre enclosure. Hsiao-lan has entered a growth spurt and is visibly getting bigger every day.

Hsiao-quai – She is a very clever individual that makes sure she stays in everyone's good books. Hsiao-quai plays well with Gordon, Hsiao-lan and Lucky and has become Tuan's second favourite lady.

Lucky – She is a sweet young lady who is growing up rapidly. Like Hsiao-lan, she too is a quiet person that avoids any confrontations or competition. Lucky is closest to RoRo.

Paddy's Group

Paddy – He is the alpha male of the group and everyone respects his position. Paddy is a very kind leader and rarely has to put his foot down. He has been enjoying the company of his new daughter, Eddi.

Jimmy – He is Paddy's second in charge but is not as good a leader as his boss. After the difficulties we had introducing Jimmy to Hebe, the two have now become close friends and are often see playing together.

Busta – He is a very happy individual who loves playing with almost anyone. Busta and Gamba are very close and seem to encourage each other to be mischievous.

Micky – He is a quiet male who tries to get involved in anything that is going on. Micky's quiet nature is misleading, as he is very outgoing and not afraid to try new things. He is often seen playing with Busta, Gamba, and Hebe.

Gamba – He is a very outgoing individual that cannot resist teasing Paddy or anyone who thinks that they are dominant. Gamba is always on the lookout for opportunities to torment others in the group but nevertheless everyone likes his playful character.

Paco – He is a low ranking male but is developing into a large and powerful chimp. Paco is quiet, keeps to himself, and gets along well with everyone in the group.

Beth – She is the dominant female of the group and thus gets involved in everything. Beth is a very kind individual unless someone crosses her and then they know about it.

Cindy – She is one of the more dominant females but faces competition from Evie and Bixa for Paddy's attention. Recently Cindy has taken on the role of foster mum to Hebe and they two have become very close.

Zoe – She enjoys life in the group but seems to have chosen a quieter role in the social politics of the hierarchy. Zoe is often seen watching Ben and Pip in their Nursery enclosure.

Evie – She is very close to Paddy and Bixa. Evie does not often get involved in the squabbles that may break out but once in she is a strong and determined chimp that will always back Paddy and Bixa.

Bixa – She is closest to Paddy and Evie and has a grumpy character. Anyone that Bixa thinks has gotten out of order will here about it and she can often be seen chasing Gamba when he has pushed his luck too far.

Cathy – She is good friends with Grisby and is a quiet member of the group. Cathy's large size means that if she ever decides to go after anyone, they had better watch out.

Grisby – She is close to Cathy and has taken on the role of "grandma" in the group. Grisby stays out of most squabbles and is very patient with the youngsters Hebe and Eddi.

Clin – She is a very focused and obsessive individual. Her years in the laboratory seem to have taken their toll and she still hoards food at meal times. From time to time Clin makes an eerie, haunting call that none of the other chimps appear to recognise or acknowledge.

Olympia – Even though she is Hebe's mum, Olympia is a young, easygoing mother and does not want to have to carry or look after Hebe all the time. She is quite happy for Cindy to help with mothering duties even though she is still very close to Hebe.

Hebe – She has settled in to life back in the group and has adopted Cindy as foster mum. As a young female, Hebe enjoys playing with everyone and they all love giving her loads of attention.

Susie – She has proved to be an excellent mother to Eddi and has newfound status as a result of the baby. Susie is now one of the most important females in the group and sticks close to Paddy.

Eddi – She turned one year old in September and is an overly confident, bold, little member of the 23 strong group. Eddi regularly leaves her mother's side and can often be seen playing with others including Paddy! The keepers have been giving Eddi extra milk feeds a couple of times per day just to make sure that she is getting enough nourishment.

Athena – She is growing up quickly and as she is in her awkward teenage phase, Athena is continually harassed by Gamba. No longer a baby, she now has to learn to stand up for herself.

Kay – She has a strong character but not necessarily a nice one. Whenever any chimp has been out of the group, either for a short visit from the vet or otherwise, Kay is the first one to dive in and slap the returning individual.

Chatta – She is into everything and makes sure that she does not miss out on anything. Chatta is a low ranking female and has to rely upon the support of other low ranking males such as Gamba and Busta to keep from getting told off.

Peppa – She is currently a low ranking female who stays well out of the way of the more dominant individuals. Peppa is a large and focused female that will probably rise in status if she learns to make more friends. She is still very close to Gamba.

Lola – She is also a low ranking female and spends a lot of time with Peppa. Lola is quiet and stays out of trouble but at the first signs of a disagreement or fight, she is there to choose sides.

Monkeys & Lemurs

Goeldi's Monkeys – Recently Mel and Oberon had a beautiful baby girl but it would seem that neither of them had any previous experience with babies as they both dumped the infant and screamed as if it were a monster. The keepers tried to care for the baby but sadly it did not survive. Mel has now been put on birth control.

Woolly Monkeys – The new woolly monkey, Willy, has spent her first full year living in the group and is finally realising hanging out with other monkeys, eating insects, and foraging for food can be fun. On a sad note, the adult female Polly passed away over the summer due to a massive heart attack. The old female Xuzy remains happy and carefree while Gismo is still a sensitive but strong leader of the group. The younger male Branco is now past his awkward adolescent phase and Tsjika and her girls, Milagra and Rosa are a strong force to contend with. Soon it may be time for the two girls to move to another place where they can get away from their mother and fall for a new dominant male.

Our second group of woolly monkeys are also doing well and have gained condition over the past year. When the six arrived at the park, two of the younger monkeys, Kuna and Levar, had a chronic gut irritation. After a year of intensive probiotic therapy, the problem has stopped and the two have been putting on weight. As this species is part of a European breeding programme, it has been decided to send the males Amigo, Yano, and Levar to a park in Italy, while the females, Lorna, Yarima, and Kuna will stay at Monkey World. We will either get a new dominant male for the three ladies or they will be introduced to Gismo and his group.

Stump-tailed Macaques - Our three groups have done really well sticking to their diets and exercise regimes. They have been loosing a lot of excess weight and it is particularly noticeable with the younger boys. The stump-tails have had a couple of visits from the dentist to remove and fill many decaying and broken teeth, while Jason had to have the vet in to check his wrist. One morning he was clearly favouring his right wrist and sure enough, it was broken. The vet put a plaster on for 6 weeks and now Jason is starting to use his arm properly again. Over the summer the stump-tails have been enjoying their outside enclosures, foraging amongst the new trees and shrubs. We have also just found out that out Macaques Rehabilitation Centre has won the 2002 Animal Welfare Award from the Universities Federation for Animal Welfare!

Barbary Macaques - These tough characters continue to prove how hardy macaques can be, choosing to sit outside in sun, rain or snow! The group is getting quite old now.

Squirrel Monkeys - The seven squirrel monkeys love their new enclosure. It has everything that a squirrel monkey could want - sunshine, interesting plants to explore, and plenty of tasty insects! Our dominant male Joey has a hard job keeping the youngsters under control with such a large area for them to cause mischief in.

Capuchins - We have had two new capuchins arrive this year, both rescued from the British pet trade. Tom and Jerry are bonding well with Sinbad and Terri our other two capuchins. You can often see Jerry joining Sinbad in a game of chase, whilst Tom is a more intelligent character, choosing to work on the feeding puzzles we provide them (not that it has anything to do with Tom's strict diet!).

Ring-tailed Lemurs - We have 21 ring-tailed lemurs but you sometimes have to look hard to find them in the tops of the trees at Malagasy. The youngsters have grown up very quickly over the last year and are now developing personalities of their own.

Ruffed Lemurs - These three ladies maybe getting on in years but Inky, Perky and Blue can still enjoy lots of play outside, hanging from ropes, jumping trees or just relaxing in the sun.

Common Marmosets - We have had six new arrivals this year: five from a British laboratory and one small male called Taz from the UK pet trade. They are now living with our three existing marmosets. These paled-faced monkeys now have access to fresh air and sunshine for the first time and they have already started to develop a suntan!

Bachelor Group

Butch – He is still the dominant male and has his hands full keeping the boys in check. Butch can be prone to temper tantrums but for the most part he is a kind leader.

Jestah – He has established himself as Butch's second in charge mainly due to the fact that he is a nightmare to everyone else.

Buxom – He is a large male that is happy to relax and let Butch and Jestah take charge of matters. Buxom, however, is very close to Butch and Jestah and thus holds a high position in the hierarchy.

Sammy – He is also a large male but an extremely nice and friendly individual. Sammy gets along well with the others and can be often seen inviting Freddy or Pacito to play. He loves seeing and interacting with our visitors.

Rocky – He is a very nervous individual. This could be because Rocky had a couple of rotten teeth that have just been removed by our dentist, Peter Kertesz. He is good mates with Mojo.

Mojo – He is a nice, quiet individual that does not cause much trouble. Mojo has become good friends with Rocky and they are never far apart.

Kyko – He keeps to himself and enjoys teasing the keepers most mornings. Kyko is a follower and will pitch in with whatever everyone else is doing.

Freddy – He is always causing mischief, either with the chimps or with the keepers. Freddy gets along well with all the boys and enjoys playing. He has a good sidekick in Pacito.

Charlie – He is doing well in the group as they all see him as an older and steadier influence. After all the years Charlie is still close to old friend Butch.

Pacito – He enjoys spending his time with Sammy and Freddy and still loves interacting with the keepers and visitors. Pacito was one of the most humanised chimps we have rescued but he is now well settled in the group.

Rodney's Group

Rodney – He is a very fair dominant male who sticks close to his adult females. Rodney will be 35 in 2003 and he is still able to maintain his total leadership over his troop. He has a big soft spot for Trudy.

Hananya – He continues to grow in stature though his confidence is lacking. Hananya is a handsome chap and is very gentle and kind to the younger ladies. He makes an effort to get along well with Rodney and will probably take over the rains some day.

Tikko – He has also matured both physically and mentally over the past year. Tikko may not be as big as the other lads his age but he is very clever and knows to keep a low profile. When Rodney is not looking, he is very popular with the ladies.

Semach – He is one of the most caring chimps in Rodney's group. Semach always looks after the new and/or younger members of the group. Thus, he is very popular even though he is not the brightest chimp around.

Gypsy – He is not overly bright either. Gypsy always seems to be the one that finds a way to get himself in trouble especially when he invents new ways to tease Rodney. Surprisingly, the two get along quite well together and can often be seen chasing or grooming each other.

Simon – He is maturing rapidly yet still aspires to be the comedian of the group. Simon loves having fun and is thus very popular. He is quite a gymnast.

Arfur – He has managed to make a lot of new friends this year. Arfur stepped forward to be Honey's new friend when she first moved into the house and his friendly nature means he gets along with everyone. Still, Jess is the most important person in his life and is never very far away.

Cherri – She is the dominant female. When Eveline and Honey were first moved into the group, Cherri spent all of her time troubling the new arrivals. Now she has decided that Eveline is OK and spends a lot of her time looking out for the younger chimp.

Peggy – She spends a lot of time with Trudy and if you see the one, you will see the other. Peggy is a very steady adult female that is good with everyone in the group.

Mona – She still has the constant companionship of Marjoline. Mona recently had a visit from an ophthalmic surgeon to see if the cataracts in both eyes were operable. We are hopeful that something can be done to increase Mona's vision but we will have to wait to hear from the consultants.

Jess – She has changed a lot over the past year, growing in confidence and size. Jess is not as shy as she used to be and with her newfound maturity, she is very popular with the boys.

Trudy – She is growing into quite a large chimp yet Trudy is still holding onto her ‘little princess' position. Most of the group still treats her like a baby, even though she isn't, and at six years old she can still be seen riding on Peggy's back from time to time.

Valerie – She has become more independent this year. Valerie seems to be a very happy person and still goes back to Mona for a cuddle from time to time.

Joline – Her character has changed a lot this year. Joline has gained confidence and is more independent though she still shares a bed with Mona, Valerie, and Marjoline.

Marjoline – She has always had a very tough, strong willed character. Marjoline does show her softer side with Mona and can often be seen walking with one arm across Mona's shoulders. She has a great deal of fun in the group.

Eveline – After moving into Rodney's group she has bonded particularly well with Cherri. Eveline has not appeared to miss her foster mum Sally at all and has integrated herself into the hierarchy politics in the new group.

Honey – She has many new friends in Rodney's group. Honey particularly likes Arfur's company and she can often be seen playing with several of the young lads at once.

Lar Gibbons – The new arrival, Ella, has been successfully introduced to our other lar gibbons, Nike and Kitty. Nike was an instant hit with Ella and this adult pair are now inseparable. Kitty adores both of her adoptive parents who take it in turns to groom and play with her.


Golden-cheeked Gibbons – Our other new arrival, Vietta, is slowly getting to know two of our other golden-cheeked gibbons, Alex and Pung-Yo. She enjoys her daily play sessions and it gives her a chance to bond with the very energetic Pung-Yo. It shouldn't be too long before she meets his adoptive mum, Alex, for the first time.

Zoey continues to be very patient when faced with all of young Peanut's antics. Although Peanut is growing fast she is still boisterous as ever. Zoey is a very calm individual but when she sees Peanut playing she too will often decided to have a bit of fun as well. We will hopefully be getting an adult male to complete the family in the near future.

Agile Gibbons - Paul and Puma's bond is growing stronger day by day. They are very similar in character and now enjoy hectic play sessions and plenty of grooming. They are also the most vocal of all our gibbons and can be heard singing to each other every morning.

Mueller's Gibbons – The male Adidas has recently become more confident around Dalumie who has always been the more dominant of the pair. His newfound bravery means the two can spend more time together playing and occasionally even grooming!

Our two male Muller's gibbons, Nini and Fox, are still the best of friends. They enjoy the extra space of their new enclosure and test each other's strength and agility during frantic play sessions. Nini is becoming more vocal and can now be heard replying when the rest of the gibbons start to sing at the other end of the park

Siamang Gibbons - Our siamang family are extremely close and always together. Onion is becoming more independent and will swing off through the trees as fast as he can with mum and dad trying to keep up. He still needs a lot of care and attention however, and will cuddle up to Sage before going to sleep.

Shop Talk

For all of you that enjoy watching Monkey Business over and over again, you should be aware that Series 5 has just arrived in our shop! It is a two video set that costs £25.00 and they are available in European (PAL) or American (NTSC) formats. In Series 5 you can see the saga of Harry the chimp in Sierra Leone unfold as well as the dramatic arrival of Tuan, the male orangutan.

Also new to the shop are two limited edition prints of Tuan and Gordon our male orangutans and Paddy, one of our stump-tailed macaques. The prints are done by wildlife artist David Dancey-Wood and are the spitting image of the models! We are offering these limited edition prints to our adoptive parents prior to anyone else so you will want to grab them quick as there are only 495 prints of each portrait. Tuan and Gordon's print is selling for £56 and Paddy's print is £32.

Letter From The Editor

Over the past few months we have been very busy organising new developments and future rescues. In October we had the pleasure of welcoming DEFRA Minister Mr Elliott Morley, our MP Mr Jim Knight, long-time friend and colleague Dr Kurtis Pei from Pingtung Rescue Centre for Endangered Wild Animals as well as His Excellency, Dr Tien, from the Taipei Representative's Office. We met to discuss the future of wild and captive orangutans and our plans to build a new 8-acre orangutan complex. All parties were extremely enthusiastic and we are hopeful that we will be able to begin building in spring/summer 2003.

We have also had the team from Channel 4's Pet Rescue down to visit the park. Wendy Turner spent two days at the park filming and learned of the tragic backgrounds that our monkeys and apes came from.

We have had a great deal of support from many people and we would like to thank everyone for their help. Over the past few months supporters have sent in donations, birthday presents, toys, hessian sacks, ropes, vitamins, fruit, vegetables, nuts, bread, knitted blankets, baby drinkers, and trees. Everything is put to use and is a great help. Other supporters have organised collection boxes, video shows, collections at animal welfare events, concerts, and donations in lieu of payments. In particular we would like to thank Sophie Ballard who made and charged people to see her underwater scene, Andrew Blackmore who ran the Bristol half marathon on our behalf, the staff at Magnox Electric who suggested that redundant fire hoses should be sent to Monkey World and Michelle Morgan of the Marilyn Lives Society for raising funding and awareness. We were greatly saddened to learn that Anne Trinder, Joy Arnold, John Balchin, and Peter Brothers passed away. They were all supporters of our rescue and rehabilitation work and will be missed by friends and family.

Thank you all for your continued support, without it we would not be able to continue rescuing as many needy monkeys and apes as we do.

Merry Christmas and all the best for a Happy New Year.