The first 16 chimpanzees of 111 from the New Iberia Research Center arrived at Chimp Haven the week of January 21, and 95 more will arrive in the coming months, bringing the total number of chimpanzees at Chimp Haven to 231. Until yesterday, the sanctuary housed only 120 chimpanzees. However, after a public outcry last fall regarding the fate of more than 100 chimpanzees being removed from the New Iberia Research Center and sent to another lab in Texas, the NIH agreed to send them all to Chimp Haven.
“It was gratifying yesterday to welcome these new research chimpanzees to Chimp Haven, Jennifer Whitaker, Chimp Haven Vice President said. “We cannot wait to see their reactions when they see the space and social opportunities that the sanctuary offers them. To think that we could potentially offer this opportunity in the future to hundreds more chimpanzees waiting for sanctuary is exciting, because it is the core of Chimp Haven’s mission.”
Chimp Haven continues to indentify additional sources of funding for construction and operations for the additional residents. Through the Road to Chimp Haven Campaign, established in November, individuals can donate gifts of any size.
“The construction of additional enclosures will allow space for multiple generations of chimpanzees,” Whitaker said. “Play yards, courtyards and habitats will be made available for the 111 chimpanzees as well as future retried chimpanzees. We are expanding not only for the present, but for a promising future – something that was given to many chimpanzees through yesterday’s recommendations from the National Institutes of Health’s Working Group.”
Chimp Haven thanks every organization and supporter who has generously donated towards retiring chimpanzees in biomedical research. Through your efforts, we have been able to offer a new life to many chimpanzees and will continue until all chimpanzees are retired.