“I was shocked to learn that some airlines transport monkeys to laboratories around the world,” said Ricky. “I support the BUAV’s Cargo Cruelty campaign and urge these airlines to take a compassionate stance and say no to monkey shipments.”
The international trade in primates for research inflicts great suffering on many thousands of monkeys every year. The BUAV’s campaign highlights the key role passenger airlines play in this chain of misery, by transporting monkeys from supply facilities in countries such as Mauritius, Vietnam, Barbados, St Kitts, China and Cambodia, for laboratories around the world where they will suffer and most will die in experiments.
Cruelty and suffering are an intrinsic part of this trade. Some monkeys are taken from the wild; others are the offspring of wild-caught individuals forced into captivity for breeding. All are torn from their family groups, packed on their own into small wooden crates and shipped as cargo, usually on extremely long journeys for laboratories in the UK, USA, Europe and Japan. Monkeys are highly sensitive animals and such treatment and conditions are very stressful for them. They may become ill or even die in transit. Delays, poor ventilation, noise and temperature fluctuations can add to their misery.
The BUAV has been influential in persuading an increasing number of airlines to take a stance to dissociate themselves from this cruelty. Now only a small number of passenger airlines continue to be involved in this ugly business.
Sarah Kite, BUAV’s Director of Special Projects said: “We are delighted to have Ricky’s support for our campaign. We know that holidaymakers and business passengers alike will be shocked to learn that monkeys may be imprisoned in crates on their flight, literally below their feet. The BUAV is calling on all airlines to refuse to be part of this chain of misery. We urge people to not book flights with any airline that transports monkeys destined for the research industry and let the airlines know why.”
For further information and a list of those airlines which DO and DO NOT transport primates, visit www.buav.org/cargocruelty.