NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – The New Mexico Foundation has announced a $150,000 grant from its Chimpanzee Sanctuary Fund will go toward the Louisiana Chimp Haven in order to support the 76 chimps that are now residing there. Located in Keithville, Louisiana, Chimp Haven is a national nonprofit sanctuary for chimpanzees that are retired from medical research.
While 76 New Mexico chimps reside at the sanctuary, there are currently 37 additional chimps located at Holloman Airforce Base in Alamogordo. While the National Institute of Health ended invasive research on the animals in 2015, it has kept the animals at the Alamogordo Primate Facility on the base.
On Tuesday, Senators Tammy Duckworth, Tom Udall, Martin Heinrich, and Martha McSally wrote a letter calling on the NIH to comply with the Chimpanzee Health Improvement, Maintenance, and Protection (CHIMP) Act.
“The surviving Alamogordo chimps remaining in New Mexico deserve a better quality of life that only sanctuary can provide,’ said Laura Bonar, chief program and policy officer with Animal Protection of New Mexico in a statement. “The NIH decision for the chimps to remain on Holloman Air Force Base keeps them in an environment which cannot meet their complex emotional and psychological needs and remains a high cost to tax payers.”