Friday, April 18, 2008

Monkeys Rescued From Abandoned Parks Department Trap

The trap was set, the monkeys came and there they stayed for almost a week until finally released from their confinement by the Wildlife and National Parks Department.

Yesterday, The Malay Mail was alerted to the pitiful condition of the monkeys that fell into the department’s trap set in Batu Caves last week. They have remained there without food or water.

The caller, who declined to be identified, said that the large metal trap was placed in the compound of a privately-owned com pany along Jalan Station, in Batu Caves.

“We contacted the Wildlife Department many times to come get the monkeys but they didn’t respond immediately.”

Although some concerned people were able to place bananas into the trap, they have been unable to find a way to provide wa ter as well.

“I know at least one died and the smell got worse,” he said, adding the monkeys have also be gun fighting with one another and some have sustained injuries.

He explained the area has been disturbed by monkeys lately due to the many development projects being carried out near the Batu Caves hillside.

“Many trees have been felled to accommodate this. The monkeys do not have anywhere else to go.”

“My issue is not the trapping of monkeys. My concern is animal rights. The Wildlife Department should check on the traps.”

The Malay Mail visited the site yesterday, following the tip-off, and arrived just as personnel from the Shah Alam Wildlife Department were about to load a metal cage filled with monkeys onto their truck.

Of the 12 caught, officers transferred nine monkeys into the wire cage and placed the dead primates into a black bag.

According to Shah Alam Wildlife Department control head Saidu Wahid, the three probably died due to fighting among themselves.

Normally, according to Saidu, it was the duty of the complainants to alert the department when monkeys are trapped.

In this case, however, he ex plained miscommunication and “transportation breakdown” were the reasons for the department’s delay.

Saidu explained: “This area actually falls under our Kuala Kubu Baru division but their vehicles broke down and so were unable to come here earlier. There was also communication breakdown between us, so we were not made aware sooner.”

He said, however, he rushed to the scene as soon as he received the information today.

As for the fate of the monkeys, Saidu said the injured animals would be taken back to the de partment for treatment and the rest released into the wild.

Story here.

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