New Non Monkey Arrivals

5th December 2016


primate enrichment
Monkey Toys

With the start of the holiday season, some visitors again, and some bringing with them, the much needed second hand baby toys. These rattles and chunky toys are a big part of the environmental enrichment we spend so much time on for our residents. The local Indian made toys for babies are of no use, as with no standards required or safety checks, they are simply crunched up into plastic confetti by the monkeys in no time! The English toys last a long time, and are really enjoyed, particularly if they have any moving parts or make a noise when shaken, any new ones always get particular attention and are keenly scrutinized by the all the monkeys, not just the youngsters.


Our volunteers spend a good deal of their time on the environmental enrichment of the monkeys pens, and can tie these new toys to their swings or tires, or just hide them, to be gleefully discovered later. We sometimes get donated used dog toys as well, and those that contain a squeaker are particularly loved by the langur monkeys.


Some visitors are not so helpful however, and two recent young English men, are an example of  this. Having seen the charity on the web, and without making an appointment as required, they turned up one morning , when we are always at our busiest cleaning out monkeys and asked to be shown around. The donation asked of 500 rupees {less than 5 pounds} to our work was explained to them. Our staff changed their schedules to accommodate them and showed them our residents, refreshments were offered and accepted. They expressed a wish to swim in the pool with the monkeys, this is normally done at 2.30pm when we have time, but again everyone changed around their jobs to organize this for them, and some  3 hours of fun ensued for monkeys and visitors alike , before they moved on to their next destination. On my return from the market food collection, I was told about why everything that day was behind schedule, and that they were sure a good donation would have been left, as they had had such an enjoyable time. I had only that AM emptied the box, so a check was easy. They had left 10 rupees each (less than 10 pence).


volunteer with monkey
Raj and volunteer Lotte

Raj is becoming a particular favourite with both visitors and volunteers alike and he is getting to love to meet and greet people. He likes to just sit on someone’s lap and get a fuss made of him. Such a change in his mental state since his arrival, when he viewed any human or monkey contact as a threat, requiring an immediate and vigorous, aggressive response. He now actually looks out for any potential human candidates and will make his submissive face signals, to try and lure them into giving him some attention.


New arrivals to the Primate trust thus month, 4 tiny puppies only 5 to 6 weeks old. These we picked up when collecting damaged fruit and veg on one of our frequent trips to the local wholesale fruit market.


They had been simply tipped out on the rubbish heap. Full of worms, fleas and ticks and badly dehydrated. They were attempting to feed on rotten papaya when found, out of their desperation and thirst, so we bought them back to the tree house for immediate care. With the help of our volunteers, who gave one to one care to the weakest of them every night, all are now doing quite well after good food, worming, flea baths and just care. I am hoping I will be able to place at least some of them in local homes when they are fit and big enough, although, as in every part of India now, everyone wants a pedigree, or look alike pedigree, and these are very much , “just” the lovable and intelligent, local street dogs.


rescued puppies
Rescued Puppies

Monkey rescue work and call outs have been quiet this month, with just one attempted rescue, still ongoing. This is an adult langur that with its troop has learned that one of the local tourist bars and restaurants is a good place to get treats from the visitors. This male appears to have been shot, and has a large chest wound that is clearly now infected. Although we have tried to catch him for treatment and release, we no longer have a functioning dart gun for this, and our nets and traps have proved ineffective in this case, to date. No doubt he was shot for stealing fruit from the humans who have cut down his forests, to build holiday homes and lush gardens with fruiting trees to tempt the now homeless monkeys in to there gardens!  Funding for a new dart gun is much needed.


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