Zoo Wars- Illegal chimps in Hanover might get new home (follow-up)

Oh what a sweet heart warming story about a Private Exotic Animal Owner being forced to give up his animals-BULLSHIT!!! Not had a single escape in over 31/2 years since he rebuilt his facilities…I wonder what that cost!!! No matter that these animals are doing well where they are or that the owner has taken his responsibility seriously-It’s no wonder he made no comment-and after reading I bet he’s glad he chose not to!!!

He must be sick over this and agreed to move them as a last resort-the future is still unknown…Even if they are sent to Houston…Will they adjust to this new environment?!? Or are they perfectly happy where they are with a loving/caring owner?!?

I especially like the final word to this article-Talk about sensualizing the news!!! WOW!!!…What does one thing have to do with the other?!? Are we talking about oranges or apples?!?


Illegal chimps in Hanover might get new home

Transfer could mean no charges, no euthanization

Finding a new home for Mechanicsville chimpanzees proving difficult

A Mechanicsville man is poised to hand his chimpanzees over to a zoo in Houston, Texas, which could spare him from criminal charges and the chimpanzees from potential euthanization.

“I think it’s the best outcome for those chimps that anyone could ask for,” said Beth Schaefer, curator of primates and carnivores for the Houston Zoo.

Curtis W. Shepperson is facing a June 23 deadline to get rid of four of his six chimpanzees from his rural backyard zoo that lack Hanover County permits.

In addition to the four illegal chimps, Shepperson has two chimps for which he has permits. But zookeepers have been reluctant to split up the six chimps, because they form familylike bonds.

Houston Zoo representatives announced a deal with Shepperson on Monday in which no money will be exchanged.

“I think it’s the first part of the last chapter,” said Steve Ross, the head of Lincoln Park Zoo’s Project ChimpCARE, which helped arrange the agreement with the Houston Zoo.

“Curtis and (his wife) really love those chimps, and it was difficult for them to imagine moving any of them,” Ross said. “I think my role was just to help them realize that the best thing they could do for those chimps would be to keep them as a group.”

Illegally possessing a wild, exotic or vicious animal in Hanover is a Class 4 misdemeanor, which carries a fine up to $250 for each conviction. A court could also order the animals euthanized.

Houston Zoo representatives say they might not be able to take in Shepperson’s chimps until late this year, which would leave Shepperson in violation of the county ordinance, unless he’s given another extension.

Before the chimps are housed in the Houston Zoo, they’d be examined, Schaefer said, adding that contagious diseases are among a very short list of improbable complications that could prevent the transfer.

Hanover County Supervisor Aubrey M. “Bucky” Stanley, who represents the Beaverdam District, said Monday he’d be willing to extend the June 23 deadline if the transfer is a sure thing.

“I would think our board would be agreeable to that,” Stanley said. “I don’t know of anybody on this board that would really want them euthanized or anything like that. So I think this is really great, if it pans out.”

Deputy County Administrator James P. Taylor said the Board of Supervisors will likely discuss Shepperson’s approaching deadline in a closed meeting Wednesday.

Shepperson has permits for dozens of animals, including various breeds of monkeys, a kangaroo and zebra. The county discovered the four illegal chimps after multiple escapes.

The last-known chimp escape from Shepperson’s property was in 2010, according to county documents. Shepperson has since added security features to his private zoo, known as Windy Oaks Animal Farm, which is on Bultaco Trail in a rural section of eastern Hanover.

Shepperson has already been given nearly three years to get rid of the four unauthorized chimps, including multiple extensions. The county could revoke Shepperson’s permit for the two authorized chimpanzees for violating the terms of the permit, but there has been no action to do so.

Schaefer said the Houston Zoo would give the chimps a lot of room to roam and trees to climb. Shepperson’s six chimps would join the zoo’s 10 chimps, though Schaefer said zoo operators would have to see how the chimps react to each other before deciding whether to integrate them or have them separated by dividers.

The zoo has 55 acres of tropical landscape with 6,000 exotic animals, according to the nonprofit.

“It’s actually the newest chimpanzee exhibit in North America. It’s state of the art — beautiful facility,” said Ross, adding that the chimps will be able to interact with people on the other side of barriers.

Shepperson has declined several requests to be interviewed.

Kimberly K. Shepperson, who lived adjacent to her father, faces up to life in prison on two charges of attempted capital murder, malicious wounding and arson. She’s accused of attacking her 11-year-old son with an ax and setting fire to the house Feb. 21.


Other links of interest:



“unauthorized chimps”…Oh OK…not…who wrote this cheery article?!?

Disclaimer connected to this blog…Things said are of my opinion and the opinion of others…Stay tuned -B

~ by topcatsroar on June 12, 2013.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: