Four chimpanzees rescued from a roadside zoo were seen sharing a loving embrace as they set foot in a brand-new sanctuary.
Found in Ohio at a zoo called the Union Ridge Wildlife Center, they were kept indoors by an exotic animal keeper whose facilities were subject to repeated complaints on animal welfare, and who was recently sentenced to prison time.
The Ohio Department of Agriculture ordered the custody of the four chimps, named April, Anna, Cash, and Lucy, to be transferred to Florida’s Save the Chimps sanctuary in Fort Pierce, Florida.
Footage shows the four chimps joyously coming together with hugs and grooming sessions in the quarantine area, where they will remain in quarantine for two months before integrating into one of the sanctuary’s 12 chimp islands that in total span 150 acres.
“These are extremely intelligent chimpanzees who deserve the chance to explore a larger world,” said Save the Chimps’ Director of Chimpanzee Behavior and Care, Dr. Andrew Halloran.
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