Thursday, March 14, 2013

Retiring Chimpanzees

This January, a group of chimpanzees previously used for medical research retired in their new home, Chimp Haven, located in Louisiana. For many of these chimpanzees, it was the first time stepping outdoors and walking around in a natural setting. Some of them had been in labs for more than 5o years, so they were awed and confounded when they were released. Watch the footage of this heart-touching moment below.

For now a total of 110 chimpanzees will retire to Chimp Haven, while the NIH continues to review 450 other chimpanzees. According a recent article, 400 will be sent to various sanctuaries, but 50 may be kept for future medical research. As one would expect, this a controversial topic among researchers as well as the public. Some believe that the chimpanzees should no longer be used for research, while others think they are crucial for medical trials since they are so closely related to humans. The NIH is expecting to make a decision by the end of March, and are willing to accept comments on the chimp plans here until the 23rd.

No comments: