The Cape of Good Hope SPCA has issued a warning to captive primate centre Monkey Town in Somerset West near Cape Town. The SPCA said it found 14 violations of the Animal Protection Act after a recent inspection.
Inspectors allegedly received an anonymous tip-off from the public. Inspector Werner Taljaard and Wildlife Officer Jon Friedman then inspected on Tuesday, January 11.
‘The establishment is trading and offers self-catering accommodation, picnic and braai facilities to the public at a fee. We are therefore of the opinion that our findings are in the interest of the public. People should know what they are paying for,’ the statement reads.
The violations include limited access to potable drinking water, a neglected donkey with severely overgrown hooves as well as the use of equipment in the vicinity of animals which left the squirrel monkeys visibly distressed.
Furthermore, there was also a maggot-infested African pygmy hedgehog enclosure, brown capuchin monkeys with no protection against the elements, and inadequate enclosures for the macaw parrots.
‘There were several operational issues highlighted during the inspection. Exposed electric heaters with unsecured electric cables in the sleeping quarters of primates posing a significant burn or electrocution risk,’ the SPCA said.
The facility was given seven days to make changes to these issues or face prosecution.
Monkey Town houses 250 primates, including 26 different exotic species of monkeys and apes. The facility occasionally takes in abandoned captive-bred monkeys and says on their website the facility is often used by CapeNature to accommodate rescued monkeys.
Picture: Getaway gallery