Dancing Monkeys rescue

In recent years, thanks to our efforts, we were able to release hundreds of dance monkeys after a rehabilitation process. The abuse that the macaques undergo to learn the tricks is cruel. We trace locations through videos of shows on social media. Together with the national police, we are dismantling training centers.

Abused Macaques

Dance monkeys are forced to perform tricks for the public. The macaques wear doll clothes and masks to resemble people as much as possible. The abuse they undergo to learn the tricks are cruel. During training, they are chained to a wall and then have to learn to stand on two legs for a long time. Their arms are tied on their back. With a metal ring around the neck with two chains attached to two posts, the animals must remain standing.

Fortunately, the dance monkeys have been banned since the end of 2013 in Jakarta and since 2016 in West Java thanks to our foundation's lobby. In 2019 the use of dancing monkeys became illegal on a national level, yet we need a lot of time to socialize this new regulation throughout Indonesia.

An arrangement was made for everyone involved in the dance monkey industry. Those who voluntarily handed over their monkeys within three months received a compensation. After these three months, seizure of the monkeys would take place. We are working hard to get the ban on a national level.

In our battle against dancing monkeys, our the team investigates where training centers are located. These can be dismantled together with the national police, after which the macaques can be confiscated.

A chained macaque in front of his cage
A chained macaque in front of his cage

Months in the nature

The rehabilitation process usually takes one year. The monkeys arrive in a terrible state: they are extremely skinny, have broken tails or ingrown chains. Some have infections in their mouth because their teeth have been pulled out.Others have serious chronic diseases such as tuberculosis. Some unfortunately do not survive.

In recent years we were able to release hundreds of monkeys in protected forest areas. To find suitable territory, the team spends months exploring nature. For example, release is not possible within the territory of existing monkey groups. Now the monkeys can be monkeys again and leave their dark past behind them.

You can help by sponsoring a primate in our care by contacting femke@wildlifewatchdogs.com.

Wildlife Watchdogs is registered at the Chamber of Commerce in The Hague (CoC nr. 27267128) and recognized by the Minister of Finance as a Public Benefit Organisation (ANBI no. 814973140).

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