Chained-Up Monkeys Are Being Sold For Less Than $10 In Bali
Warning: This article contains images which some readers may find distressing
Heartbreaking images have emerged from Bali, Indonesia, showing chained up monkeys being sold on the street.
Taken by photographer Luke Massey, the distressing images show long-tailed macaque monkeys being sold for as little as $7.20.
The animals were pictured locked to and inside cages, as they watch tourists pass by. Massey couldn't believe his eyes when he toured through the market area of Denpasar and Bandung during a recent trip to the island.
He said: "Long-tailed macaques are the most commonly found monkey for sale in Indonesia's markets.
"They are cute looking and easily attainable in the wild relatively close to cities. The demand is mixed.
"Some people buy the monkeys as babies, thinking they will stay cute forever, only to find them turn aggressive once they hit adulthood. Others buy them to train as dancing monkeys.
"These monkeys are often tortured to learn to stand on their feet like humans, being hung just so their toes touch the ground for hours, beaten and starved so that they ride a bicycle or stilts on demand.
"Once trained they are paraded at traffic lights and busy areas, where their owners ask for money after each performance."
The photographer went on to say that monkeys on sale usually live in misery and he feels so 'helpless' whenever he sees them chained up and caged or living in captivity.
He added: "Youngsters are left in small cages or chained up once they reach adulthood. Some lucky monkeys are bought by well-meaning tourists to be released or given to organisations but, despite being well meaning, this usually just fuels the trade.
"Seeing a monkey in the wild is a fantastic experience. Seeing them in captivity in the markets is a horrible feeling, seeing their sadness in their eyes, while feeling completely helpless as they're chained up is awful. Also knowing they are group animals and they are often kept on their own."
Massey posted other photos showing the monkeys wearing colourful outfits and being forced to perform - walking on stilts, riding bikes and wearing masks.
Most people will be aware about the issues involving elephant tourism in south-east Asia, but these issues also affect much smaller animals like these.
Hopefully the practice can stop soon.
Featured Image Credit: Caters