Improvements to the Monkey Pens 29th April 2012

Much noise and chaos around the monkey pens at present as smart new monsoon covers go on all the pens. Although the wild monkeys of course survive the monsoon season without our help they do shelter through the heaviest rains in thick foliage or if town dwellers they make use of every dry patch they can find. Our resident rescues will have the luxury of a guaranteed dry place to sit this season, in past years they have had to avoid the inevitable drips from flapping plastic tarpaulins.

Ella the youngest rescue Langur, continues to make good progress and has an easy going nature and despite the considerable size difference enjoys play sessions with Puck, Phooka and Shaylee. Her happy confidence and young age has meant that they haven’t yet resorted to rough or bullying behaviour with her.

Yet another tiny baby Langur came to us, his mother was killed by dog’s .Although he came to us quite quickly his degree of stress and trauma proved too much and he was unable to cope with the strangeness of everything, even though Ella tried to make friends and settle him down. After much effort and care from us and the vets, he basically just gave up.

The saga of the big local market in Mapusa goes on, but with a full time member of the I.A.R staff on site, more of the puppies and kittens dumped are going straight into the cages, rather than just being left on the rubbish tips, and the dumpers can then informed of free neutering.

One new concern is one of the ‘Pet Shops’ has started to sell young baby rabbits, mice and guinea pigs. These are displayed on the pavement during the day, packed into small open wire cages. With their low price of a few rupees and a total ignorance of their needs few are going to survive even when purchased. On display they are never provided with water and only rarely, food either. Despite the attempts to educate the shops owners on my every visit, that at the very least they must have fresh food at all times, I still find them in bare cages. 

This is quite ironic as within a few steps of these hungry and thirsty victims, you can pick up all manner of discarded fruit and vegetables, just off the ground. The only hopeful sign of any compassion came when I was pushing through the cages some of this food for them, and got a tap on the shoulder from an elderly local lady who I have seen regularly searching for discarded foods herself. She pointed me to a cage I hadn’t yet fed, to ensure that I didn’t miss them! Empathy from a fellow sufferer and further shame on all those who just pass by.

Poor Aaji, our rather overweight female bonnet macaque probably has to have an operation for her rupture this week, she is one of the favourites here being easy going and able to be handled by the volunteers. Unfortunately her main interest has always been her food which hasn’t helped with her problem.


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