Neither Ronny nor Mama can be released due to ongoing treatment requirements, but they have now formed a strong bond. With both monkeys needing daily veterinary care for similar facial disfigurements, it was an ideal match and we are thrilled that they are getting along so well.
Ronny was severely electrocuted by uninsulated power lines and his face was horribly burned. His injury was gruesome and it was the first time we have ever seen an electrocution injury like it. Although the burns looked very bad, Ronny behaved normally and with the medication and treatments from our veterinarian, Dr. Francisco Sánchez, he was never in any pain. Ronny wanted to live and so we decided to give him a chance. We developed a treatment plan based on our years of experience with electrical burns on howler monkeys, but this was a unique case and we weren’t sure what the outcome would be and we had hoped that his face would heal enough so he could be released back into the jungle. Unfortunately, he still needs veterinary care due to his disfigured eyelid and cannot be released.
Mama was rescued after she was brutally attacked by an alpha male. Her face was essentially ripped off, her nasal cavities crushed and exposed, and her wounds were badly infected and inflamed so much that she couldn’t see…and she was pregnant. Mama needed extensive medical care to recover from her horrific injuries. Her face was repaired and she received extensive medical care. She gave birth to a beautify baby, but, sadly, the infant did not survive more than a few days. Mama’s injuries started to heal, but after the loss of her infant, she became stressed and didn’t want to eat. We made the decision to move her into our juvenile nursery and for many years she played the role of surrogate mother to the orphaned infants. Although she loved and cared for the infants, she has had to watch as they have all grown and then left when they were returned to the forest. We didn’t feel it was fair to upset Mama each time it was time for the orphans to leave and since Ronny needed a companion, we hoped they would get along and become friend. Like Ronny, Mama still needs daily treatment for her disfigured eye and can not be released.