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A lab chimpanzee sees the sky for the first time in 28 years

A lab chimpanzee sees the sky for the first time in 28 years

Vanilla, a 28-year-old chimpanzee, has lived her entire life in captivity in a laboratory. Now released at the Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary in Florida, she has just witnessed the open sky for the first time in front of the cameras.

Chimpanzee, an animal used in a laboratory

Chimpanzees have long been used in laboratory research because of their genetic closeness to humans. These monkeys share more than 98% of their genetic heritage with humans. they Anatomical, physiological and immunological similarities They also make them interesting models for studying human diseases and testing potential treatments. Moreover, chimpanzees live in complex social groups And we have similar behaviors to ours. This makes them useful for studying social interactions, cognition, learning, language, and other aspects of human behaviour.

Over time, the use of chimpanzees for hunting has decreased Ethical concerns regarding animal welfare. Nowadays, the presence of these animals in the laboratory has been greatly reduced, as many countries have instituted legal restrictions that limit or prohibit the practice. It also happens often that some of these animals, who have lived their entire lives in captivity, are finally released to enjoy their final years in the great outdoors. This is especially the case with vanilla.

animated video

The female chimpanzee spent the early part of her life at the Biomedical Research Center in New York where she and dozens of other individuals were housed in small hanging cages. In 1995, they were all sent to the Wildlife Waystation, an animal rescue center in California where they could only develop in Covered and covered enclosure, isolated from the outside world. The establishment finally closed its doors in 2019.

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Since then, the female chimpanzee and 29 of her peers have been living in one of the organization’s sanctuaries. After spending some time in quarantine (as is the usual procedure), the animals were gradually introduced to one of the facility’s larger family groups, according to the release. All these individuals live Island area of ​​1.2 hectares.

This new video posted by the NGO allows us to see Vanilla explore this new habitat. Initially reluctant, we first see the female perching on the doorstep until Dwight, the alpha male of the group, encourages her to join him by embracing her. During the clip, I looked up at the sky several times. she It had not been seen before in 28 years.