COVID-19 puts great apes and monkeys in peril
Posted in 20/03/2020
From PASA – Pan African Sanctuaries Alliance
This is one of the hardest letters I’ve ever had to write. Our hearts and thoughts go out to you and your loved ones who may be affected by COVID-19. At the same time, I need to tell you that the outbreak has created an unprecedented threat to many of the great apes and monkeys at PASA member sanctuaries across Africa.
Because of closed borders and travel restrictions, sanctuaries are facing severe shortages of medical supplies, veterinarians, and volunteers to provide animal care. We worry that soon they’ll s struggle to get food for the animals because of disrupted supply chains.
Great apes—all of which are endangered—are extremely vulnerable to viruses from humans. Contagious diseases are a major threat to their existence. In this time of uncertainty, PASA members are working nonstop to keep apes and the people that care for them safe.
The impact of COVID-19 is threatening the very existence of services provided by PASA members, Vervet Monkey Foundation, Chimpanzee Conservation Center, Lilongwe Wildlife Trust, Sweetwaters Chimpanzee Sanctuary, Colobus Conservation, Limbe Wildlife Centre, Sanaga-Yong Chimpanzee Rescue, Chimp Eden, Tacugama Chimpanzee Sanctuary, and Lola ya Bonobo—among others.
These sanctuaries across Africa care for the gamut of primates—many of whom have overcome incredible odds to recover from heinous abuse and injury.