California moves last two chimps from animal sanctuary that abruptly closed in 2019

California moves last two chimps from animal sanctuary that abruptly closed in 2019

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With the movement of its last two chimpanzees, a former Los Angeles County animal shelter that abruptly closed in 2019 is now free of animal charges, state officials said Wednesday.

There were still 500 animals living at the Wildlife Waystation in the Angeles National Forest when the facility closed due to financial issues in 2019. The state Department of Fish and Wildlife then became responsible for the animals and slowly began the process of relocating the species various in functional shrines.

After eight chimpanzees were transferred last month to Chimp Haven, a chimpanzee sanctuary in Louisiana, there were only two animals left at the Wildlife Waystation, according to officials.

“It was actually relatively easy to find homes for lions, tigers, bears, jaguars, all kinds of primates, birds and reptiles,” CDFW regional manager Ed Pert said in a statement. “Chimpanzees are a difficult species to rehome. After it became illegal to conduct medical research on chimpanzees in 2015, research facilities in the US have either closed or rehoused them. There has not been enough space in the facilities good to get them all.”

Chimp Haven also had room for the last two chimps, who were sent to the southern state to live among old friends earlier this month, according to the Department of Fish and Wildlife.

The 42 chimpanzees living at the Wildlife Waystation had mostly come from a biomedical laboratory in New York that closed in the 1990s, according to the agency.

Legal troubles and natural disasters helped the once-vibrant animal sanctuary in Sylmar to collapse in 2019. Extreme flooding and the Creek fire in 2017 were the final touches that caused severe damage to the facility that the sanctuary could not afford to repair.

When the Wildlife Waystation surrendered its permits in 2019, the Department of Fish and Wildlife took over the sanctuary. The department became responsible for rehoming hundreds of animals, including alligators, wolves, tigers and the 42 chimpanzees that lived on the premises.

“We had to find unique ways to do things that needed to happen quickly and consistently,” Pert said, “like buying food for the lions and tigers and bears and getting a contract to provide water.”

2022 Los Angeles Times.

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Citation: California relocates last two chimpanzees from suddenly closed animal sanctuary in 2019 (2022, December 29) Retrieved December 30, 2022, from -sanctuary-abruptly. html

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