Feds: Primates frostbit in North Carolina lose tips of tails

Apr 15, 2022, 5:48 AM | Updated: 6:06 am

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Three primates suffered frostbite while enduring subfreezing conditions this year at an exotic animal farm operated by a North Carolina county commissioner that has been repeatedly cited by federal inspectors.

The latest citations, involving a black and white ruffed lemur, a De Brazza’s monkey and a capuchin, were issued in March by the U.S. Department of Agriculture against Zootastic Park of Lake Norman, The Charlotte Observer reported.

“The lemur’s hand was injured and remains contracted while the De Brazza’s and capuchin suffered the loss of their tail tips,” according to a copy of the federal inspection report, obtained by the animal-welfare group PETA.

Scottie Brown, the Iredell County commissioner who owns the park outside Charlotte, didn’t reply to a phone message from the newspaper on Thursday.

In another instance, the inspector saw a young howler monkey “hugging a live electric cord that was connected to a heating pad inside its enclosure.” That could have hurt or killed the monkey, the inspector wrote.

The USDA also cited Zootastic for medicating animals without a veterinarian present, allowing visitors unsupervised access to some animals and failing to document its purchase or disposal of at least a dozen animals, the inspection reports show.

Federal officials ordered Zootastic to fix all of the issues by late March, but didn’t fine the park for the violations.

In August 2021, a USDA inspector found that maggots had eaten the flesh of three wolves and that exotic squirrels showed signs of “self-trauma,” according to the newspaper.

An exotic tri-colored Prevost’s squirrel, native of Southeast Asia, had a superficial wound that Zootastic failed to report to its attending veterinarian, the inspector noted in her report.

The squirrel recently had its tail amputated at a veterinary hospital “due to apparent ongoing self-trauma,” the inspector wrote. Another Prevost’s squirrel previously had its tail amputated for the same reason, the inspector wrote.

By summer 2021, the USDA had inspected Zootastic 27 times since 2014, agency records reviewed by the Observer show. Inspectors cited the zoo for various animal-welfare violations on 14 of the visits, according to the documents.

In 2016, the USDA fined the zoo $7,450 for nine violations, including a poorly built enclosure that let a kinkajou escape. A lion cub at the zoo killed the tropical rain forest mammal, the inspection records showed.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


(Facebook Photo/City of San Luis, Arizona)...
Associated Press

San Luis authorities receive complaints about 911 calls going across border

Authorities in San Luis say they are receiving more complaints about 911 calls mistakenly going across the border.
6 days ago
(Pexels Photo)...
Associated Press

Daylight saving time begins in most of US this weekend

No time change is observed in Hawaii, most of Arizona, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Guam and the Northern Marianas.
14 days ago
Mexican army soldiers prepare a search mission for four U.S. citizens kidnapped by gunmen in Matamo...
Associated Press

How the 4 abducted Americans in Mexico were located

The anonymous tip that led Mexican authorities to a remote shack where four abducted Americans were held described armed men and blindfolds.
14 days ago
Tom Brundy points to a newly built irrigation canal on one of the fields at his farm Tuesday, Feb. ...
Associated Press

Southwest farmers reluctant to idle farmland to save water

There is a growing sense that fallowing will have to be part of the solution to the increasingly desperate drought in the West.
21 days ago
A young bison calf stands in a pond with its herd at Bull Hollow, Okla., on Sept. 27, 2022. The cal...
Associated Press

US aims to restore bison herds to Native American lands after near extinction

U.S. officials will work to restore more large bison herds to Native American lands under a Friday order from Interior Secretary Deb Haaland.
21 days ago
Children play in a dried riverbed in Flassans-sur-Issole, southern France, Wednesday, March 1, 2023...
Associated Press

Italy, France confront 2nd year of western Europe drought

ROME (AP) — Bracing for Italy’s second consecutive year of drought for the first time in decades, Premier Giorgia Meloni huddled with ministers Wednesday to start mapping out an action plan Wednesday, joining France and other nations in western Europe grappling with scant winter rain and snow. Meloni and her ministers decided to appoint an […]
23 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Quantum Fiber

How high-speed fiber internet edges out cable for everyday use

In a world where technology drives so much of our daily lives, a lack of high-speed internet can be a major issue.
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Prep the plumbing in your home just in time for the holidays

With the holidays approaching, it's important to know when your home is in need of heating and plumbing updates before more guests start to come around.
(Desert Institute for Spine Care photo)...

Why DISC is world renowned for back and neck pain treatments

Fifty percent of Americans and 90% of people at least 50 years old have some level of degenerative disc disease.
Feds: Primates frostbit in North Carolina lose tips of tails