Monkey Helpline needs you

2018-01-16 06:00
Monkey Helpline assists a vervet monkey.PHOTO: supplied

Monkey Helpline assists a vervet monkey.PHOTO: supplied

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MONKEY Helpline, which started in 1995, is a registered NPO that educates people about why monkeys are here, why they behave the way they do, the things people should do or not do when monkeys are around, and how to humanely keep monkeys away from places where they are not welcome.

According to Carol Booth, a volunteer at Monkey Helpline, just knowing that monkeys will not attack and bite people, and that they don’t carry rabies is usually enough to change antagonism and fear into tolerance, and frequently into appreciation.

“We also run a rescue operation and a high care unit. We rescue an average of three monkeys every two days, and their injuries range from wounds sustained during fights with other monkeys, dog bites, being run over by motor vehicles, electrocuted, snared, trapped or poisoned, shot with airguns - pellet or BB guns - catapults, paintball guns and firearms, as well as being caught or injured on razor wire.

“Many are babies who are orphaned or injured when mother monkeys are attacked by dogs or other monkeys, or are severely injured or killed in human-related incidents.

“Over eighty percent of the monkeys we rescue, irrespective of the reason why, have got air-gun pellets lodged in their bodies. Lead pellets cause terrible pain, suffering and a lingering death and no person, adult or child, should ever shoot monkeys, or any other animals, with an airgun.”

She said as the only dedicated monkey rescue project in KwaZulu-Natal, Monkey Helpline is available to do rescues 24 hours a day, every day.

“On any given day we are treating 10 or more monkeys in our home-based high care unit – frequently in excess of 20 monkeys.

“Once they have recovered from their
injuries these monkeys are released back
into their home territory, transferred to
a rehabilitation facility or placed in a sanctuary.

“Monkey Helpline networks with a number of other vervet-related individuals, groups, and general primate and animal-care

Booth also appealed to the community for assistance.

“I know it’s been a tough month and
everyone has overspent over Christmas and New Year, but Monkey Helpline still needs your help to continue with the work we do.

“We have a very easy debt order system, or pay pal, as well as EFT options you can use to become a much needed part of the team.

“Even a R100 debit order would go a long way to helping us do the work we do.

“Go to our website or click on and choose the option best suited to you.”


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