Last Sunday, 14 critically endangered slow lorises, destined to be sold illegally as pets, were rescued from a wildlife trafficker in West Java.
The rescue uncovers the devastating plight of these adorable, shy and small nocturnal primates who are, sadly, burdened with a big bounty on their heads in the exotic pet trade.
The slow lorises, according to International Animal Rescue (IAR), were comprised of six females, seven males and one infant.
The animals were confiscated from horrific conditions, by the Agency for Conservation of Natural Resources, the police of Tasikmalaya, West Java and the Ministry of Law Enforcement for the Environment and Forestry.
Members from IAR in Indonesia provided emergency treatment to the slow lorises; many suffering from the effects of being held captive in what the organization described as “filthy, cramped cages.”
Nur Purba Priambada, IAR’s veterinarian, reported that they were all suffering from dehydration and diarrhea and a few had injuries from fights that probably occurred as a result of the animals being confined so closely together in a small narrow space.
Fortunately, the slow lorises had not been clipped or damaged yet which, according to IAR is “a barbaric practice often inflicted on lorises captured for the pet trade to prevent injury to potential buyers or dealers.” According to the organization, the venomous bite of a loris, can cause humans to experience anaphylactic shock and, in some cases, death.