Policy Statement on the Long-term Care of Chimpanzees and Their Involvement in Scientific Research

From: ASP Bulletin 20(3):2, 1996

The following statement was reviewed by the Research and Development Committee of the American Society of Primatologists and the Society’s Board of Directors. The Board of Directors officially approved this policy statement in its present form on August 12, 1996.

WHEREAS chimpanzees are present in the U.S. in research centers, zoological gardens, and other settings outside their natural habitat; and

WHEREAS large-scale reintroduction of captive-born chimpanzees to natural habitat is not presently feasible nor likely to become feasible in the near future; and

WHEREAS chimpanzees are members of the species most closely related and biologically similar to humans; and

WHEREAS chimpanzees require high quality medical care, secure and complex physical facilities, and social and psychological stimulation; and

WHEREAS much valuable information regarding health and behavior can be learned from chimpanzees of all ages; and

WHEREAS convenience euthanasia is generally considered inappropriate for great apes and maintenance of chimpanzees under appropriate conditions is costly;

The American Society of Primatologists recommends: