Caring for Monkey World’s Primates Through Covid-19

Although the gates to Monkey World have been closed for the majority of this past year, the centre has still been bustling with activity! 

The animals have given us routine and we have directed all our energies into keeping them fit, well and stimulated in their rehabilitated family groups. 

A-mei making a nest out of the park’s bamboo – ©MonkeyWorld

All 260 rescued primates enjoyed natural enrichment, as the gardening team cleared bamboo from the public areas of the park. A-mei, one of our female orangutans, enjoyed making a nest out of it, while Bart’s chimps chewed on this rarely had snack! 

The chimps enjoyed Christmas stockings; football socks stuffed with walnuts, oranges and other treats, which provided hours of fun, as the chimps had to balance up high and un-tie the socks from the hoses.

Rescues have also been ongoing, but this year, limited to monkeys trapped in the legal UK pet trade. Through lockdown, humans have realised how hard it is for social beings to be taken from their families, restricted access to the outside and had their natural behaviours curbed – and yet we still find monkeys being bought as pets and kept alone, in small birdcages in living rooms right here in Britain. 

Thankfully the team have also been busy working with the government on banning the keeping of primates as pets in England – so we’re hopeful this is coming to an end.

Bart enjoying some rarely-had bamboo snack – image ©MonkeyWorld

Now spring is upon us and we are looking forward to welcoming in a fresh start – and now real visitors too! To ensure that visitors, staff and primates are safe, we’ve installed many hand sanitiser stations, limited entry numbers and introduced a pre-booking system online. All visitors aged 3+ will be required to wear a face mask, covering or visor. These steps are necessary to protect our vulnerable rescued and endangered primates, who our dedicated staff have worked so hard to protect over the past year and keep healthy and happy!

The park is now open for visitors; Prebooking is essential of course – https://monkeyworld.org/book-tickets/ – and Monkey World ask that everyone in your party has downloaded the NHS Covid-19 app prior to arriving at the park.
They’re also always grateful to anyone arriving with old blankets, towels & fresh fruit and veg! If you’d like to support the work they’re doing but can’t make it to the park for a visit, then maybe stop by their Amazon wishlist – both the orangutan team and small monkey team have requests on there currently!
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/registry/wishlist/1FPR1E46E31BS

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