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You Cheeky Monkey!
Monkey World (Dorset)
Member Name: thecatsnose
Monkey World (Dorset)
Date: 07/06/09, updated on 07/06/09 (90 review reads)
Advantages: Lots to see and do
Disadvantages: If the chimps don't want to come out and play - they wont
Monkey World is a 65 acre sanctuary and rehabilitation centre in Dorset that helps primates from all over the world, and re-homes them in their park back into natural living conditions and family groups.
Their aim is to stop the smuggling of primates from the wild and stop them ending up as pets, beach photographers props, TV stars, being used for research, or eaten as bush meat - which we were told has even been seen on the menu somewhere in London :(
I visited Monkey World on what was the hottest day of the year so far, which probably wasn't the best idea because the majority of the primates wanted to be inside in the shade instead of whooping around their magnificent enclosures like you see on the television series Monkey Business.
The park is very big and there is a lot to see, as well as seeing the monkeys there is a nature walk, a petting zoo, various places to eat and a gift shop.
There are many different kinds of primates in Monkey World inlcuding Wooly Monkeys, Orangutans, Gibbons and Chimpanzees. They all have custom build enclosures according to what they would experience in the wild. They are fed a special diet according to what they would usually eat, which is scattered around so they are encouraged to forage for their food.
Monkey World do not aim to breed from the Chimps in their care because unfortunately there are many more that need rescuing so they try to keep numbers down so they always have space for more, although there have been some little 'accidents'.
It was explained to us in a talk that at first they fitted their chimp ladies with the contraceptive implant - but they removed them during their extensive grooming sessions. Then they tried with the coil, but again they managed to remove them somehow?! They have now settled for the contraceptive pill which seems to be working so far! Some of the other more endangered primates, such as the Wooly Monkeys and some species of Gibbon, are part of a breeding programme.
The Chimpanzees are split into family groups, like how they would live in the wild. There are 3 groups of chimps at Monkey World - Hananya's Group, Paddy's Group and Butch's Group. It was explained to us that it can sometimes take up to a year from rescuing a chimp to it being fully integrated into a group and family life at the park.
The park has good facilities for less able people like life sized statues of the primates for blind or partially sighted people to feel, as well as other facilities such as mobility scooters and wheelchairs. The only part of the park that is inaccessible for wheelchair users is the nature walk, but there are no monkeys to see there.
If you are interested in primates, animal rescue or just fancy a day out Monkey World is a good place to go. It costs £10.50 per adult, or there are family tickets for £31.00, but there are various concessions available - check them out on www.monkeyworld.co.uk.
Summary: Good day out
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