A shocking tale of kidnap and murder
January 3, 2014, 6:39 pm
Filed under: Chimpanzee Welfare, Chimps in entertainment | Tags: , ,
DSCF4286 (1)

A recent photo of Linda living in a private home. Photo credit: Mona Foundation.

Linda is now in her thirties but she has already witnessed the sickening murder of her family; she was kidnapped and then illegally trafficked from her home in Africa. Linda is a female chimpanzee who has endured a life of confinement and living in unnatural conditions, just so that  she can be kept as a pet living in a private home.

Wild female chimpanzee with her baby. Photo credit: Jane Goodall Institute.

Wild female chimpanzee with her baby. Photo credit: Jane Goodall Institute.

Infant chimpanzees live very closely with their mothers, clinging to her body when travelling long distances to search for food, sharing her nest at night and suckling until at least three years old.  As you can imagine, mother and child bonds are very strong. Family bonds are also very strong and infants are cherished by the family.  Chimpanzee’s bodies and minds are highly adapted to live in the forest, to forage for a wide variety of foods including fruits, leaves, blossoms, seeds, pith, park, insects and even monkeys and small deer.

linda06 copy

Linda as an infant. Photo credit: Mona Foundation.

In order for a chimpanzee to become a pet, a series of sad and unforgivable events must take place. The baby chimp is stolen from the mother; she will not give up her child easily so she is usually shot; her family including the alpha male rush to help her and the baby and they are shot too. Up to 10 chimpanzees may be shot on that day. The traumatized baby is then taken and trafficked very long distances in a small crate with little food or water. Normally only one in ten chimps will survive this cruelty.

Linda being used as a photographer's prop.

Linda being used as a photographer’s prop. Photo credit: Mona Foundation.

The baby is then forced into a life unsuitable to the needs of a very active and very intelligent individual. Often forced to wear human clothes and given a human diet which is not suitable for the chimpanzee. This results in serious psychological and physiological problems, many irreversible. Baby chimpanzees are often seen rocking uncontrollably as a result of maternal deprivation.

Linda living as a pet.

Linda living as a pet. Photo credit: Mona Foundation.

These chimpanzees are suffering because they are not living the life that they have evolved to live.  Young infant chimps are viewed as cute and cuddly but they can be unpredictable and dangerous. When they reach adolescence around 7 years old, they get much stronger and become difficult to handle. The chimpanzee inevitable ends up locked up in tiny cage to languish there for the rest of its life, unless an organization steps in.   The Mona sanctuary in Spain have agreed to rescue Linda, where she will then begin the slow process of rehabilitation and integration into her new chimp family. She will learn how to live like a chimpanzee, making her own choices daily and she will live the rest of her life free from exploitation and suffering.  If you will like to donate to help with the rescue and rehabilitation of Linda please check out http://www.justgiving.com/help-us-rescue-linda