Content Header Mask

Mauritius monkey trade hits the headlines in Spain


Investigations carried out by the BUAV into the trade in primates for research have featured in Spanish media, including the National Spanish newspaper, El Mundo. In the coverage, BUAV footage of the monkey trapping fields of Mauritius along with images of the shocking experiments monkeys may be subjected to in Europe were also featured, shown to an audience of over 1,300,000 people in Spain! 

The article, which follows an investigation by the international animal group, Animal Equality, focuses on the primate breeding and supply centre, Camarles, in Tarragon, Spain - which can hold around 3,500 long-tailed macaques. It tells the story of how the animals have been ripped from their jungle homes and families on Mauritius, transported around 10,000 miles to Spain, and imprisoned in the centre where they will be used for breeding and their offspring sold to laboratories across Europe. The footage has also been aired on the television stations, ‘Cuatro’ and ‘TeleCinco’. Further articles on the centre have been published  on the websites of the Spanish publications, The Huffington Post, Publico and L’ebre Digital

Sarah Kite, Director of Special Projects at the BUAV states:Monkeys are highly social and intelligent animals. Imprisoning them in unnatural conditions, depriving them of their freedom and native habitat and treating them as breeding machines to produce offspring for the laboratories of Europe is both cruel and morally unacceptable."  

Spain is the largest European importer of macaques from Mauritius. In 2011 alone, 1,424 macaques were imported. The animals are mainly exported from Noveprim, one of the largest primate breeding companies on Mauritius and sent to Camarles for breeding.Only recently the BUAV uncovered the terrible slaughter of hundreds of macaques at Noveprim, some of whom were killed for being ‘surplus’ to requirements. 

The BUAV has carried out extensive research exposing the suffering during the trapping, confinement and export of these monkeys for research. Read more information about our ‘Trading in Cruelty’ investigation on MauritiusYou can also find out more about our ‘Save our Monkey’s’ campaign to end the Mauritius trade at

The monkeys are transported from Mauritius to Europe by Air France, one of the few remaining international carriers that continue to transport primates for research purposes. One recent shipment uncovered by the BUAV involved over 100 young monkeys who were flown by Air France from Noveprim in Mauritius to the Camarles breeding facility in Spain. 

The BUAV has carried out several key investigations to expose the suffering of monkeys at their final destination – the laboratory. One of the investigations featured in the Spanish media was the BUAV 2003 Poisoned for Profit investigation into the contract testing company Covance in Münster, Germany. We placed an undercover investigator inside Covance for five months and exposed the horrific suffering of thousands of monkeys subjected to a life of deprivation, fear, torment and toxic poisoning. Read more information about the ‘Poisoning for Profit’ investigation.