Friday, May 22, 2015

Endangered Species Day - Chimpanzee Exotic Pet Trade

Endangered Species Day was last Friday, May 15, 2015.  

I love all Animals, and so many I have come to know have special places in my Heart.   I have always loved Chimpanzees and my Zoo Friends are very dear to me. Many know I have crusaded for them recently and so I choose them for this post.

You can learn more about my crusade on my blog
or Facebook Group

You can read more about the Endangered status of Chimpanzees here:

As a child of the 60s, it wasn't considered taboo, nor was it illegal to have or want a Pet Primate. Today, there are still Humans who want them as Pets, the only difference is, in the past Fifty years, many of us have learned why Primates, especially Chimpanzees, and other Wild Animals, not only do not make good Pets, but should not be anything but Wild.  

For my 3rd Birthday,  we had a Clown who owned different species of small Monkeys.  I remember my Mother and I went to her apartment, and the Monkeys were wearing diapers and jumping all over the place. When they came to my party, they were dressed in different outfits, ranging from a Tarzan suit to a three piece suit.  ... A friend of my Uncle's had a Squirrel Monkey that visited our house and swung on the chandelier!

I also remember my Dad asking me if I wanted a Chimp. My Mother veto'd the idea, but it certainly was in the realm of possibility. ...  I recently found out that a guy in our neighborhood had one.

So, Primates were a common Pet when I was a Child.  Just as common, was the presence of Chimpanzee's in Entertainment.  

One of my favorite shows growing up was Lancelot Link, Secret Chimp.   It aired in 1970-1972 .   It was all things wonderful of the time.  Talking Chimps, bright and groovy Fashion, and Music. Awesome!  I thought about this show often and then while on vacation in 1987, sitting in a hotel room in Ft. Lauderdale (on the way to Disney World), I turned on the TV and there it was! My boyfriend at the time probably wasn't keen on spending the rest of the evening watching a marathon of Chimp TV, but there was no way I was passing this up! Screen-Cap

Many years ago, when I was learning about the San Francisco Zoo Chimps, I was told that our Cobby had his own TV show in the 60s.   I tried to research it online a few different times over the years and only a couple years ago did I find one mention of it, but even that mention didn't yield much information.

Over a year ago, I was contacted by a fan of Cobby's show! Cobby's Hobbies (American made) aired in her native Australia, when she was a Child.  Now, a filmmaker, and having found Cobby, she set out to make a Documentary on his life.  

The research journey has formed the Film into a circle of life for Chimps in the Exotic Pet Trade. Little did we know as Children that Chimps like Cobby and Tonga the Chimp who played Lancelot Link, were taken from their Mothers in the Wild and used for Entertainment, Research, and as Pets. Some fared better than others.  This Film will show the plight of these Animals who we share the closest DNA match to.  A tragic situation that still goes on today.

While helping with research, I thought it would be a great idea to include "Lancelot Link" as he was to American Children, what Cobby was to Australian Children.   I found Tonga, now named Charlie Chuckles living at Wildlife Waystation Sanctuary in Southern California. A wonderful place, they were gracious to not only be interviewed, but allow the Filmmakers to come and meet Charlie for the Film.  I am very excited and happy that he is a part of this project!

Charlie Chuckles aka"Lancelot Link"
Photo Courtesy of Alyson Rousseau
Wildlife Waystation Sanctuary  Thank you!

The Film is pushing to a finish line and needs some help. Please visit, like and share both the Film Facebook Page and their CrowdFunding site. ...  Let's see our Friends Cobby and Charlie on the Big Screen, and help educate People with the Message this Film will put forth.

Cobby the Chimp Film Page

Pozible CrowdFunding Campaign for Film,  Cobby:The Dark Side of Cute Screen-Cap

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