LOOK: KZN woman charged for illegally keeping 100 vervet monkeys in small cages
Durban - A KZN South Coast woman has been charged for illegally keeping one hundred monkeys at the Umsizi Umkomaas Vervet Monkey Rescue Centre.
According to Musa Mntambo, Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife: Communications Manager, the monkeys were seized on Monday in the Umkomaas area and the owner was charged with breaking two sections of Nature Conservation Ordinance 15 of 1974.
He said two sections that she failed to adhere to was keeping in captivity any indigenous mammal or exotic mammal, except in terms of a permit granted.
Mntambo said the owner had been given 21 days notice on February 4 to remove the monkeys.
On Monday, she was charged and given a R1500 fine following an inspection by Ezemvelo and SPCA.
“All vervet monkeys removed by Ezemvelo Game Capture Unit will be disposed of in accordance with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Guidelines for the Placement of Confiscated Animals.
He said during the inspection officials found the monkeys housed in outdoor enclosures.
“In one enclosure next to the kitchen, there were multiple monkeys housed in an extremely small (3.5m x 2m) and dark outdoor area with no sun availability and no perches (except for one beam which was attached to broken and rusting steel mesh). The walls and floors were covered in old faecal matter and had to be swept out by the consulting team before catching could begin.”
Mntambo said another enclosure had six monkeys.
“This enclosure showed the most obvious health and safety concerns. Large nails were sticking out of the walls, rotting roofing and broken floor boards allowed for monkeys to hide in these unsanitary, unsafe areas.”
Roy Jones Ezemvelo’s District Conservation Manager warned that Ezemvelo will continue to confiscate animals that are kept without official permits.