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To the rescue

Rhesus macaque celebrates turning 21 at Black Beauty Ranch

Kind News magazine, Dec 2016/Jan 2017

  • Julie, a rhesus macaque, spent half her life in a lab being used for medical research. Now she enjoys life at Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch. Photo by: Frank Loftus/The HSUS

This December, Julie will turn 21. That's an exciting birthday for many people, but it will be an extra special day for Julie. It will be her first birthday at Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch.

Julie will spend the day with Sunshine, her new best friend. They'll celebrate by soaking up some rays and sharing yummy treats. They'll spend time playing and just enjoying being together.

A new life

Julie is a kind of monkey called a rhesus macaque. For roughly half her life, Julie lived in a laboratory being used for medical research. She was then retired to a zoo where she lived for another decade. Earlier this year, Julie's long-time mate at the zoo died. Zoo officials felt that Julie would be happier living with another rhesus macaque. That's when she came to Black Beauty Ranch and where she met Sunshine.

"As with any primate introduction, we do it in different stages because they can be quite aggressive with each other," says Noelle Almrud, director of Black Beauty Ranch. But the meeting between Julie and Sunshine went very well.

Within two days, the girls had become friends. "They've been grooming each other pretty much consistently, which is probably the most positive behavior you can have," adds Almrud. "It shows that they're bonded. We're just thrilled that they're happy with each other."

Happy birthday, Julie!

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