Jaw the elderly female Northern pig-tailed macaque (Macaca leonina) has arrived at the WFFT Wildlife Rescue Centre. She has spent the last 15 years of her life in solitary confinement at a temple in Northern Thailand after being taken in and cared for by monks. We were alerted to her her plight by Joy Huss from Hand to Paw in Chiang Mai, who has worked tirelessly with the monks at the temple to try and provide a better future for Jaw. We would like thank Joy Huss along with Delphine Ronfot, and Nola Lee Kelsey for their help assisting with the rescue of Jaw. She has gone through an initial health check and we have found that the large lump visible on her abdominal area is a hemorrhage. She will be given a few days to recover from the long journey to WFFT before the WFFT Vet Team will perform surgery, we are hopeful that the hemorrhage can be fixed, resulting in a higher quality of life for this very special monkey.
The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species lists the Northern pig-tailed macaque as Vulnerable (VU). Their population has declined by over 30% over the last three generations across its entire range due to several threats, and this decline is predicted to continue at the same rate or higher in the next three generations. Habitat disturbances that affect this species’ survival include: selective logging; timber and firewood collection for making charcoal; building roads, dams, power lines; and deliberately setting fires. These animals are hunted and traded for food, sport and traditional “medicine”, and the live animals as pets. In Thailand, the males of this species are exploited for picking coconuts by the industry. Sometimes, a well-trained macaque is sold for 1,000USD. They are also in demand by resorts and other tourist attractions for inhumane circus style shows.
Jaw is now in the WFFT quarantine facility, with no chain restricting her movements, settling in and eating well. We hope in the future that we will be able to introduce her to some of the other macaques at WFFT. Updates in the very special old lady will follow.