In June 2013, laboratory animal supplier Primate Products closed its monkey quarantine facility in Doral. The building stood empty until recently. We don’t know if Primate Products has reopened the facility permanently or if it’s only temporary.
On August 6 an inspector with the U.S. Department of Agriculture visited the facility and measured high heat and humidity in a room holding 120 long-tailed macaques. Unlike animals in the wild, these monkeys confined inside metal cages are not able to regulate their body temperature by finding shade or water. Temperature extremes can cause significant stress and discomfort. As in humans, monkeys can suffer and die from heat stroke.
The USDA inspector took four measurements over a period of four hours. The heat index, what the temperature feels like to the body when humidity is combined with the air temperature, was between 94 and 96 degrees Fahrenheit.
Protection from temperature extremes is a basic requirement of the Animal Welfare Act. Primate Products was cited for the violation and ordered to correct the problem.