For decades, primates (monkeys, apes, and lemurs) have been used in the entertainment industry, appearing as “actors” and props in television shows, movies, advertisements, street performances, photographs, and music videos. These appearances negatively impact both individual animal welfare and the conservation of primates at large. Research conducted through the Lester E. Fisher Center for the Study and Conservation of Apes here at Lincoln Park Zoo has shown that people who see inaccurate portrayals of chimpanzees are less likely to think about the threats they face in the wild.
How can you be a part of the solution and help primates thrive? Take Action With Us by:
Pause Before Posting
Social media is a notorious place for circulating images and videos of primates as pets or performers. These images and videos can be detrimental to species conservation, as they may cause viewers to believe that some species of primates are abundant and not endangered.
Stop the cycle and avoid sharing or liking images and videos you may happen across. While traveling, do not pose for photos with primates or pay to see species that live in poor conditions.
Walk the Talk
Do not buy products or support companies that use inappropriate portrayals of primates in their advertising. Similarly, avoid movies or television programs that use primate “actors”.
Spread the Word
When you see these images, open up the conversation and discuss with family and friends the importance of letting primates be primates and how inappropriate use of primates in entertainment hurts their welfare and threatens the protection of wild populations. Be sure to follow Lincoln Park Zoo’s Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to discover relevant ways you can Take Action With Us.
Call Your Representatives
The zoo has long advocated for enhanced protections for primates. Did you know that there is no federal law regulating the possession of primates as personal pets?
The Captive Primate Safety Act (S. 1588) aims to end the pet primate trade. This act would protect these cognitively-advanced animals by prohibiting the private possession of any lives species of nonhuman primate, including chimpanzees, gorillas, monkeys, and lemurs.
One easy way to take action and protect primates is by contacting your representative and asking for their support of the Captive Primate Safety Act.
From tracking and evaluating the status of every chimpanzee living in the United States through Project ChimpCARE to supporting various legislation, Lincoln Park Zoo is dedicated to improving the lives of primates both in human care and in the wild. Will you join us?