Since its founding,
Save the Chimps has been home to more than 330 chimpanzees in need.
At our sanctuary.
Eaten every day.
Protecting our chimps.
A life of Freedom from Exploitation
Core to the non-profit’s belief is that chimpanzees deserve to live free from exploitation and endangerment. Thanks to its dedicated staff and amazing volunteers, Save the Chimps delivers safety and exemplary care to chimpanzees in need, ensuring that they can thrive in their retirement.View our Mission
The late Carole Noon, Ph.D, founded Save the Chimps in 1997 in response to the U.S. Air Force’s announcement that it would no longer conduct research on chimpanzees. Outraged over the treatment and conditions that these chimpanzees had endured, Dr. Noon sued the Air Force on behalf of the captive chimpanzees and gained permanent custody of twenty-one chimps. Her bold, courageous and humane actions were the genesis of Save the Chimps. Envisioning bright sunshine and blue skies for the rescued chimpanzees, Dr. Noon and Co-Founder Jon Stryker of the Arcus Foundation, worked together to purchase 150 acres in Fort Pierce, Florida and designed a state-of-the-art chimpanzee sanctuary, including a three-acre island home, complete with hills, shelter, and climbing structures for the Air Force. This island home enabled the chimps to roam freely and make basic choices formerly denied to them.
Three months after the arrival of Save the Chimps’ first rescued chimpanzees, an unexpected event forever altered the scale and scope of the new organization. The Coulston Foundation––a biomedical research lab based in New Mexico with multiple violations of the Animal Welfare Act––was going bankrupt and offered to sell their laboratory land and buildings, as well as donate 266 chimpanzees to Save the Chimps. It was a pivotal moment for the sanctuary and a call to action that Noon and Stryker felt couldn’t be ignored. Thus began the single largest rescue effort ever on behalf of captive chimpanzees. Save the Chimps took over the Coulston Foundation to become the largest privately funded chimpanzee sanctuary in the U.S. Save the Chimps modified the lab into a healthier and happier environment for the chimpanzees and started what would later be referred to as the “Great Chimpanzee Migration”–– the nine-year process of moving those 266 chimps from the lab to new island homes in sunny Florida. On December 14, 2011, the Great Chimpanzee Migration ended as the final group of Coulston chimps were released onto their new island home.