14 June 2011, 05:00
A Macaque monkey will be saved by Suffolk Trading Standards officers when it arrives at the Port of Felixstowe on a container ship from Malaysia.
Officers were alerted to the stowaway monkey by Maersk Shipping crew members after they found the animal on board shortly after setting off on their journey on 27th May 2011.
Under UK rabies rules, monkeys are only permitted to be imported at specified airports requiring an import licence and six months' quarantine. The Port of Felixstowe is not approved to import animals and as such bringing an animal ashore would be classed as an offence.
However, in view of the circumstances, Suffolk Trading Standards has been working with the Animal Health Agency and Border Force to allow the monkey to be transported from Felixstowe to the Ape and Monkey sanctuary at Caehopkin, South Wales.
Peter Korwin, Principal Trading Standards Officer, said; "Trading Standards play a very important role in animal disease control, which helps protect both public and animal health.
We commend the ship’s crew for their quick-thinking in securing this Macaque monkey and for alerting the authorities. When incidents are reported to us which pose a potential animal disease risk, we will always treat them as a matter of very high importance."