Born Free USA Blog
by Will Travers,
Chief Executive Officer
What can you say about a big-hearted bloke who has rescued dolphins, tigers, elephants and more and whose parents once helped a lion cub from a department store by caring for him in their backyard and engineering his rightful return to Africa? You can safely say that he's got great animal instincts! In 1984, Will Travers joined his parents — "Born Free" film stars Virginia McKenna and Bill Travers — to form what became The Born Free Foundation. With knowledge, passion and compassion dripping from his every word, Will's blogs are sure to make you embrace our crusade to Keep Wildlife in the Wild ®.
One of the most special days in Born Free USA’s history has arrived. We are ready, and we are excited!
Today the first batch of more than 100 monkeys from the Wild Animal Orphanage arrives at our Primate Sanctuary in south Texas. Last year we struck a deal to provide lifetime care for the macaques (and one baboon) after the WAO went bankrupt. In the eight months since, Director Tim Ajax and the rest of our sanctuary’s staff members have been working extra hard to build enclosures and make all the other necessary preparations for the WAO monkeys’ arrival.
The agreement, which represents one of the largest macaque rescues (if not the largest) in U.S. history, has tremendous financial ramifications for our organization. We are committed to providing abundant nutritional food, spacious and recreationally rich enclosures, and a minimum of human involvement (by our highly trained and devoted staff) so that the monkeys can live out their lives as naturally as is possible. None of that is cheap, and we do not cut corners.
One of our greatest challenges will be to keep our soon-to-be-600-plus residents comfortable in what can be extreme weather conditions. Last year, for example, the region suffered through a crippling heat wave and drought. We do all we can to provide ample shade and water, but again, tremendous expenses are involved.
So as we bring you updates about today’s 10 WAO arrivals on our sanctuary’s Facebook page, in our photo gallery and elsewhere, please consider making a donation to our Rescue & Rehabilitation Fund to help us in this endeavor — one of the most significant things we will ever do. Thank you for your support.