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Monkey World News



Monkey World campaigners present pet trade petition to Downing Street

CAMPAIGNERS from Dorset who argue that the monkey pet trade is "out of control" will present a petition to Downing Street today calling for more regulation.
Dr Alison Cronin, director of rescue centre Monkey World, has obtained more than 100,000 signatures on a petition calling for domesticated monkeys to be guaranteed an appropriate standard of care.
Musician and activist Peter Gabriel is set to present the petition to government this afternoon alongside her, with South Dorset MP Richard Drax also due to attend.
The petition asks that monkeys kept as pets in Britain as part of the legal pet trade are afforded a similar standard of care to that of monkeys kept in zoos and wildlife parks.
There are 66 species of monkey that do not currently require a licence or special registration to be kept as pets.
Dr Cronin said: "We are doing as much as we can to rescue as many British pet trade monkeys as possible.
"Even after building two different facilities to home more than 50 'pet' monkeys, including marmosets, tamarins, capuchin monkeys, spider monkeys, a saki monkey and a lemur, we are full and now have a waiting list of monkeys that need our specialist care.
"While the situation the monkeys are in is terrible, there is also a very tragic human side to this story as many well-meaning, but ignorant, people are buying these wild animals, at vast expense, from unscrupulous breeders, animal dealers, and pet shops that are taking advantage and telling people it is okay to keep a monkey in solitary confinement, in a bird cage, in their sitting room.
"It is tragic and out of control."
The petition demands that the government acts immediately on the issue, which has been debated for years in select committees.
Monkey World has built two new monkey houses since 2013 to provide specialist care for animals rescued from the pet trade.
The first of those houses was filled within six weeks of opening and the second took only eight weeks to reach its capacity.
One hundred monkeys have been rescued by the centre since 1987, with 50 of those arriving in the last five years.
Members of the public will join Monkey World campaigners at Downing Street when the petition is handed over.
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