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Stop researchers from Newcastle University going to Kenya to carry out experiments on primates


The BUAV is pleased to announce that Newcastle University has released a statement declaring that it will end its involvement in controversial research on wild-caught baboons in Kenya.  

This move follows the recent BUAV investigation, which uncovered the cruel capture and use of wild baboons in Kenya, and the involvement of researchers from Newcastle University who were travelling to the country to conduct highly invasive research using public funding. 

Thank you to all who signed our petition and joined our call to Newcastle University to stop its researchers bypassing UK law and going to Kenya to conduct disturbing research on wild-caught baboons.

There is still more to do to end baboon suffering in Kenya. Our investigation Captive Cruelty, revealed the terrible suffering inflicted on wild baboons in Kenya; a country where legislation governing the use of animals in research is outdated and hopelessly inadequate. Many of the baboons were kept in poor conditions that were a far cry from roaming freely across the plains of Africa. Torn from their homes and families, some were housed on their own for years in small barren metal cages with no enrichment, before being used in shocking research.     

Please sign and share our petition calling upon the President of Kenya to stop the cruel capture and use of wild baboons for research:



An investigation carried out by the BUAV has uncovered the cruel capture and use of wild baboons in Kenya and the involvement of researchers from Newcastle University travelling to the country to conduct invasive research. Legislation in Kenya relating to animal experiments is outdated and hopelessly inadequate. Wild baboons are captured and held at the Institute of Primate Research (IPR) under conditions which seriously compromise their welfare and breach international guidelines, before being subjected to disturbing experiments.  

In the UK, using wild-caught primates in research was effectively banned in 1995, yet researchers from Newcastle University are bypassing UK law and are travelling to Kenya to use wild-caught baboons in disturbing and highly invasive experiments. This is also in blatant breach of recent guidance by UK funding bodies which requires UK researchers to maintain UK welfare standards when carrying out experiments abroad.

The BUAV investigation has uncovered the unacceptable conditions in which wild baboons and other primates were held at the Institute of Primate Research; conditions that compromised the welfare of baboons and failed to meet international welfare standards. Some of the baboons were housed on their own in barren metal cages. There was no enrichment. These conditions can cause disturbed abnormal behaviour and take the form of pacing and circling. The introduction of baboons to others was often done poorly, resulting in fighting and injuries. Some infants were taken from their mothers at a young age and housed alone.

Researchers from Newcastle University have been conducting especially invasive brain surgery on baboons in which the individual’s head was placed into a stereotaxic frame and held in place whilst the skull was drilled open and parts of the brain removed (as seen in the photo).The animals were kept alive under anaesthetic for many hours while tests were carried out before being killed. 

For further information on the BUAV investigation:

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This petition was delivered to:
  • Newcastle University
    Professor Chris Brink
  • Newcastle University
    Professor Ella Ritchie
  • Newcastle University
    Professor Suzanne Cholerton
  • Newcastle University
    Professor Nick Wright
  • Newcastle University
    Professor Chris Day
  • Newcastle University
    Professor Charles Harvey
  • Newcastle University
    Professor Steve Homans
  • Newcastle University
    Professor Tony Stevenson

British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection started this petition with a single signature, and now has 7,037 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.