Sandra, a 33-year-old orangutan who spent most of her life in captivity, has been released into the Center for Great Apes refuge in Wauchula, Florida, where she may live in peace with other orangutans of her species.
The animal gained international attention in 2014 when it was the focus of a court case in Argentina, when Judge Elena Liberatori declared it a “non-human person.”
Sandra worked for more than 20 years at the Buenos Aires Zoo, which is now an ecopark, before being transferred to the Sedgwick County Zoo in Kansas on September 27, 2019 to follow all health regulations. She was in quarantine for 39 days before being transported to the refuge.
Expert investigations revealed positive findings in terms of his health, allowing TB to be ruled out. David Murphy, a veterinarian who accompanied her on the flight, says she stayed calm throughout and was particularly interested in looking out the windows.
The orangutan’s outstanding conduct throughout her stay at the Sedgwick County Zoo surprised the zoo’s staff.
Sandra currently shares her home with 22 orangutans and 31 chimps, all of which were rescued from the entertainment business, labs, the illicit exotic pet trade, and circuses.
Bubbles, the late singer Michael Jackson’s monkey, is one of his pals, having arrived in 2005.
According to CNN, Patti Ragan, the sanctuary’s director, issued the following statement in a news release:
“She was hesitant when she initially came, but she began exploring after she discovered the swings, toys, and green spaces in her new home.”
Sandra’s recognition in 2014, as a result of a judgement that established she possessed basic rights such as “being sentient” rather than being regarded an object or creature susceptible to property, is undeniably important in raising awareness about the respect these animals need.
Ragan said to CNN:
“Hundreds of orangutans as clever and attractive as Sandra are being lost due to habitat devastation caused by logging, mining, and palm oil farming.”
The orangutan’s new caregivers had been eagerly anticipating her arrival, and they are all committed to look after her for the remainder of her life.
She may play in a grassy area with several buildings at the sanctuary, which has a sophisticated network of above-ground tunnels connecting the 11 distinct locations where orangutans dwell on the 100-plus-acre facility. and perform stunts
Sandra was born on February 14, 1986, in Germany, and was brought to the Buenos Aires Zoo when she was nine years old, where she was maintained by businessman and television broadcaster Gerardo Sofovich.
There were few individuals who disapproved with the notion of exotic animals being kept in cages in those days, therefore the zoo was seen as an educational institution, with the first animal day party in Buenos Aires held there. Sandra now has a better quality of life because to the expansion of the animal rights movement, since she is no longer subjected to the city’s loudness or the lack of other creatures of her type.
Other options for Sandra were considered at first, including the Sorocaba reserve in the state of So Paulo, but it was ultimately decided that the Florida sanctuary was the best fit for her.
Some people, such as Pedro Pozas, the president of the Great Apes Project and its executive director in Spain, were unhappy with the choice and favored the Sorocaba location.
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