Monkey 24A: After 17 years of torture inside UF, he died at the gloved hands of his tormentors
by NIO Florida
Complete Veterinary Records for Monkey 2A4 (1992 – 2009)
The Tragic & Horrifying Life of Monkey 2A4
The initial record confirms that 2A4 and nine other male monkeys were trapped in the jungles of Guyana in 1992, probably as babies (their mothers most likely murdered in front of them), and ripped from their homes and families. Terrified, bewildered, and disoriented, they were shipped to the US. We were unable to confirm which airline was responsible. The tragic fate of little 2A4 was then sealed when he, along with his nine comrades, was sold by Charles River to Vivisector Raymond J. Bergeron at the University of Florida.
A UF lab insider describes how these monkeys are then driven insane:
“[The monkeys are imprisoned in individual] cages as males would kill each other if housed together. Removed from their normal very social dynamic, the isolation makes them insane. I mean that literally. They are no longer normal monkeys as found in the wild. Most of these animals have been bred for this purpose (it’s cheaper), although some of the older ones were wild caught. I’m not sure which is worse. They’re given mirrors on the walls so they can see each other and dog toys to play with. This species (Cebus apella) is about the size of a skinny cat. It’s the “organ grinder” monkey, also called the capuchin monkey. The cages are about 2.5′ square. They have a false back in them that are attached to handles on the front. The researcher pulls the handles forcefully towards them, squeezing the monkey up against the front of the cage so that the anesthesia can be given. Monkeys are smart. They know how to evade all attempts to force them to do anything, especially after years of the same treatment. They learn how to fight back. That’s why this method of restraint is so stressful. They fight back so well, that you have to try again and again to get them pinned just right so you can get the needle into the thigh quickly. It’s always a two person job and never easy or unstressful.“
The records confirm that 2A4 was the subject of an iron chelation study: he was injected with an overload of iron that would compromise him for the duration of his life in order to test “chelating agents” or drugs that are intended to remove excess iron in humans. As we noted previously, a major Health Science Center’s benefactor suffered and died from Hemochromatosis, a disease where too much iron is absorbed. It is reasonable, therefore, to conclude that the human symptoms of this disease were perpetually induced in 2A4 throughout his terrifying imprisonment: abdominal pain, fatigue, joint pain, lack of energy, loss of body hair, weight loss, and weakness.
The vet records also reveal that, after 24A was wrenched from his squeeze cage, he was subjected to regular tuberculin tests that were injected into his eyelids. This is normal procedure to ensure that tuberculosis isn’t present. That disease will decimate an entire primate facility very quickly.
The legally-required documentation of the controlled substances used (Ketamine, Telazol) and other vet procedures illustrates the horryifying regimens to which 2A4 was subjected for 17 years. He was routinely “knocked down,” dragged from his cage, experimented on, thrown back in his cage, and left alone to languish until his tormentors returned. When moved within the Communicore Building, his tiny body would probably have been carried by hand from room to room to conduct invasive assaults on his fragile body because they are basically taking them down the hall to different rooms. This is generally done by holding their biceps behind their backs with both hands and holding the monkeys well away form the body in case they start to wake up. These leaked floor plans will allow one to chart how he was (and other nonhuman inmates are) transported unconscious through the underground animal prison labyrinths.
Finally, after 17 years of torment, 2A4 died at the gloved hands of one of his terrorists in 2009. There are two likely reasons for his death.
One reason may be that while he was fighting to escape his attackers, the anesthesia may have been injected into a vein, artery, or lung. Our UF insider explains:
“The anesthesia drugs are supposed to be delivered IM (intra-muscular) and an accidental IV injection would be fatal because it would go immediately to the brain and stop the heart instead of slowly being released over time from the muscle tissue. In normal injections, one pulls back on the syringe plunger a little first and if you see blood, you know you hit a vein and you would then withdraw and restick to be sure you hit muscle. Unfortunately, the monkeys are struggling against the restraint and squirming so much that you take your chances and go ahead and inject quickly if you are in the muscle area – and hope you don’t hit a vein. This also means you frequently hit bone (VERY painful) and nerves by accident too.”
The second possibility relates to the fact that 2A4 was made into a drug addict. Because these monkeys are “knocked down” so frequently, they become drug addicts and develop a resistance to the drugs used to subdue them:
“The larger and larger doses become more and more dangerous as the window between effective sedation and overdose becomes more and more narrow. This also lends itself to causing impatience in the technician who goes a bit overboard in trying to get the job done and the animal is continuing to fight to maintain consciousness. The monkeys must be drugged because they are extremely dangerous if handled any other way. Despite their small size, they can easily bite your finger off and cause sever damage to any other part of your body they get hold of (they will often go for your face).”
Again, the 17-year long incarceration of 2A4, his life of torture and murder at the hands of his tormentors, was regulated by and in full compliance with the strict guidelines of the Animal Welfare Act.