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A BUAV investigation uncovers shocking conditions inside the monkey farms of Laos


The cruel trade in monkeys in South East Asia for the international research industry involves thousands of monkeys incarcerated in overcrowded and barren conditions in breeding farms across Laos.

The BUAV investigation uncovered shocking conditions that breach internationally recognised animal welfare guidelines. Some monkeys were found dead in their pens, while others were severely emaciated and suffering from severe hair loss and injuries. 


Photo credit: Jo-Anne McArthur

The BUAV is calling for action by CITES (Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species) and governments to address the largely unregulated trade in macaque within South-east Asia and take action over the serious animal welfare concerns that this investigation has uncovered.

The long-tailed macaque (M. fascicularis) is currently the most heavily-traded mammal listed on the CITES Appendices. There has been a rapid expansion of the international trade in long-tailed macaques in South East Asia since 2004 as the breeding and supply of the species for research purposes has developed into a large-scale business enterprise. The number of long-tailed macaques exported globally for research sharply rose from 119,373 (between 1999 and 2003) to 261,823 (between 2004 and 2008). The monkeys are exported to Vietnam and China, both countries are major suppliers of macaques to the laboratories of the UK, Europe and the USA. 

BUAV Chief Executive, Michelle Thew, states:Our investigation has uncovered a disturbing and unregulated trade in monkeys for research. CITES and governments must start to address the growing concerns that surround the cruelty and plundering of the macaque populations from their native forests in South East Asia to feed the international research industry." 



© BUAV/Decipher Films 2012

Please support our campaign:  

Write letters to the Laos embassy in your country calling on the government of Laos to place an immediate ban on the capture, breeding and export of long-tailed macaques destined for the research industry. Click here for the contact details of Laos embassies around the world.