Advice and Suggestions for Commenting on Illegal Loris Material on the Internet
By Prof Anna Nekaris, Oxford Brookes University
Little Fireface Project, Nocturnal Primate Research Group
Millions of people around the world have fallen in love with the slow loris through a series of viral YouTube videos. These videos on first appearance seem adorable. A wide-eyed loris grasping for an umbrella… A plump pygmy loris stretching her arms up for a tickle… A loris in a nappy reaching out for an umbrella…but why are these videos truly cruel and what can you do about them?
In one of several recent studies by Oxford Brookes University researchers, we showed that that of 100 slow loris videos on the internet, every single one violated the principles of the five freedoms every animal deserves to have for good welfare and to avoid cruelty. In fact, most videos violated four or five of these tried and tested tenets for good husbandry. Yet social networking sites: ignore when users flag them as cruel, do not provide an option for flagging, or promote them with ads, rewarding the perpetrators not only of the cruel care of the animals, but also the fact that slow loris pets are almost always illegal.
Slow lorises are listed under CITES Appendix 1, meaning they cannot be traded for commercial purposes. Few if any slow lorises have ever been shipped for the pet trade to any country in the world. Even if they have, even the best zoos rarely breed slow lorises. They are a ‘Red Light’ species in zoos, meaning urgent action is required to breed them. The offspring of illegally smuggled animals are also illegal – so please do not believe an uploader just because he claims to have bought the loris in a pet shop!
The path to the pet trade is so horrific it cannot be imagined. Animals are ripped from the forest; shoved into plastic crates and bags; their teeth are clipped out with crude mechanisms with no anaesthesia, no aftercare, no medicine and most die; multiple animals are transported in crates where they wound each other with their venomous bites; market conditions are inhumane, boiling hot, and cruel, with no proper food fed to the animals; most owners have no idea how to care for these social primates with their specialised diets and their deaths are very long and painful as they starve to death in loneliness, obese with diabetes or rotting teeth from being fed fruit.
HOW YOU CAN HELP:
- Please don’t ‘like’ or ‘thumbs up’ this video and encourage this cruel trade.
- Thumbs down such videos
- Report them to the Web 2.0 service as cruel and illegal
- Kindly ask the uploader to remove their video and provide links to our web site as evidence
- Do not be angry and cruel to uploaders as they may not understand why loris videos are cruel
- Provide people who own loris pets with information for a nearby rescue centre or zoo
- Never buy an illegal animal from a market as this encourages trade.
- Report the animal to the police, your ambassador and to a local newspaper.
- LEAVE LORIS IN THE FOREST