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Finally the results for the crowdfunding 2015 by the Nature Project and Paseo de los Monos came true. Despite of not having reached the initial amount of 37000 USD for opening the scientific station intended to rehabilitate and release rescued specimens, we opted for Plan B. A structure to enrich the habitat of the spider monkeys.

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The story of the three spider monkeys Lola, Pancho and Lisa is moving. The three of them came for the first time to Paseo de los Monos in 2006 and 2007 from three different destinations. Pancho and Lola suffered terrible abuse by humans since they were babies, while Lisa was a family pet in Puyo.

Because of these abuses, Pancho did not develop his muscles and his ideal size, plus he developed aggressive behaviors that will mark his life forever. For this reason, these monkeys will never be released into their habitat due to environmental pressures, and their fate will be to live in captivity until the end of his days.

For this reason, the members of the Zoo Project and Paseo de los Monos decided to do something to enrich their campus, where the three of them are living now, and that after the arrival of “Anita”, daughter of Pancho and Lola, will need more space and mobility.

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The team from Paseo de los Monos proposed to do something different for them. Aerial tunnels suspended high in the trees, allowing them to explore different habitats in a vertical space and travel more perimeter within the grounds of the Paseo de los Monos.

In mid-January we received enthusiastically to our friends from the Nature Project in Paseo de los Monos. The team led by Jorge and Sarah came from Ibiza with the goal to start the construction of the tunnels. The team was made up of 4 volunteers from The Nature Project, five native assistants and volunteers of Los Monos. In less than two weeks, two tunnels were raised: the spider monkeys tunnel has diameter of 1 meter and 100 meters long, allowing the monkeys to reach the shores of the beautiful Chilcayacu River while exploring the changes of vegetation along the way.

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Jorge and his team left  Paseo de los Monos on February 19 after opening the first two tunnels.

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Moreover, the funds raised allowed to help two additional groups of monkeys. The group formed by the white capuchins Peter, Newton, Charlie and Julio received a tunnel of 60 centimeters in diameter and 80 meters long.

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The third tunnel was built by a great team of volunteers. Upon his arrival on February 22nd of 2016, Lukas Wetter, a volunteer who traveled from Argentina became enthusiastic about the project and decided that he would finish the construction during his days with us. This tunnel is 60 cm in diameter with almost 100 meters long, allowing the group of black capuchins and squirrel monkeys interact from the top of the trees with other troops and a change of scenery.

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This tunnel is 60 cm in diameter with almost 100 meters long, allowing the group of black capuchins and squirrel monkeys interact from the top of the trees with other troops and a change of scenery.

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It is important to note that in all three cases the groups of monkeys are happy and fully enjoy the tunnels. This work of environmental enrichment for groups of primates in captivity, victims of trafficking, reaches another level. As for handling, installation of tunnels allows the human team to work more easily for animal welfare since, in the case of the tunnel for the spider monkeys, it allows communication with the woolly monkey´s park. Thus, they can be rotated troops and interact between them, while avoiding any possible aggression between them.
There is still much left to do. The work of the persons who act in rescue centers for wildlife will not end until people become aware about this evil that damages our planet. Many of these animals can not be released, nor they will know the freedom into the wild or perform their role of forestation in the Amazonic forests, and enrich the genetic diversity of their populations.

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However, these animals now have another role. To aware humanity, so that we can see the beauty that we are losing every time we have a wild animal as a pet. It is not just the beauty we are eliminating from our forests, but also the environmental and ecological services that animals and forests provide to all humanity.