AAP joins forces to save monkeys on Sint Maarten

Over 40 animal welfare organizations, including the Humane Society International/Europe, World Animal Protection NL, IFAW Netherlands, the Vervet Monkey Foundation and the Born Free Foundation, have co-signed a letter from AAP Animal Advocacy and Protection to the government of St. Maarten. The letter calls for refraining from euthanizing the island’s vervet monkeys. In the past, these monkeys were brought to the island by humans. The animal welfare organizations support AAP’s call for sterilization and ways to reduce the nuisance in an animal-friendly manner.

The presence of the growing population of vervet monkeys is considered a nuisance because the smart animals forage in orchards, gardens and homes and are said to be harmful to native wildlife. A research project by Nature Foundation Sint Maarten concluded in June 2021 that the two options to stop this are sterilizing or culling. In December 2022, the Ministry of TEATT made funds available that enables the foundation to execute the recommended lethal approach. AAP and the other international organizations are pushing for the animal-friendly alternative to curb the nuisance.

In the letter, the organizations point out that there is international consensus on wildlife control principles, as published in Conservation Biology in 2017. Interventions like this one on St. Maarten should follow these principles, which prioritize non-lethal methods over lethal ones. In the letter, AAP offers its expertise and resources to enable a so-called ‘Trap, Neuter, Release’ project. AAP hopes that the initiative leads to the start of a constructive cooperation with the Nature Foundation Sint Maarten.

The letter is co-signed by(alphabetically):

AAP Animal Advocacy and Protection
Action for Primates
Animal Action Greece
Animal Coalition Netherlands (16 Dutch member organizations)
Animal Defenders International
Animal Friends Croatia
Animal Rights
Animal Talk Africa
Animals Asia
Ban Animal Trading
Beauty Without Cruelty South Africa
Born Free Foundation
Centre for Animal Rehabilitation and Education
C’est Assez
Code Animal
Community Led Animal Welfare
Deutscher Tierschutzbund
DierenLot Foundation
EMS Foundation
Eurogroup for Animals (85 EU member organisations)
Fondation Brigitte Bardot
Future 4 Wildlife
Fur for Animals
Global White Lion Protection Trust
Hellenic Animal Welfare Federation
Humane Society International/Europe
IFAW Netherlands
International Primate Protection League
LAV (Italy)
Luonto-Liiton susiryhmä (Finland)
Monkey Helpline
No Whales In Captivity
Pan African Sanctuary Alliance
Panthera Africa Big Cat Sanctuary
Rhinos in Africa
South Peninsula Khoisan Council
Southern Africa Fight For Rhinos
Vervet Monkey Foundation
Wild Futures UK
WildConcience – Wildlife Conservation Science and Education
World Animal Protection Netherlands

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