From that point on we began finding out that Chaac was not a unique case. There are hundreds, perhaps thousands, just like him in the region - orphaned, in need of medical care and at the mercy of a pet trader. After being purchased they are often left tied to a tree by a rope or locked in a dark cage in a city apartment. The would-be illegal pet owners who buy them discover they do not make good pets. Cute as they are, they become withdrawn, difficult and sometimes aggressive, physically and emotionally ill when they are forced to live in a human habitat. So the new owner soon abandons them and they are left helpless, never having learned how to survive in the wild. Word soon began to spread that we had a sanctuary for orphaned spider monkeys and wildlife agencies, veterinarians, tour guides, private citizens and more began asking if we could take in additional monkeys they knew of that were in similar situations. We currently provide a safe and happy home to 52 such spider monkeys. We strive to do much more than just allow them to survive. We spend our days doing everything we can to ensure that they enjoy the best quality of life possible here in their native jungle.
The rest as they say is history. Our original dream of a quiet retirement on the beach seems like a distant memory now, as we have devoted our full time and resources to the care of these angels of the jungle that nobody else was willing or able to provide.