Monday, October 14, 2002

LAB PRIMATES RIDE OUT STORM

Research animals felt storm's presence
Louisiana Gannett News Posted on October 12, 2002

NEW IBERIA -- Winds howled and rain pummeled the region last week, but nearly 6,000 animals at the New Iberia Research Center fared well....

Days before Lili roared into the area, workers and researchers at NIRC moved into disaster preparedness mode. The animals at the center, including about 5,000 monkeys and 360 chimpanzees, did pick up on disruption of their routines, Rowell said....

The chimpanzees stay indoors. They were a little more subdued than usual, Fontenot said.

The primates at the center are part of behavioral research that includes measuring physiological responses to different life-altering circumstances. Various projects are ongoing at the same time, Fontenot said.

Some of the animals are part of a breeding colony for private industry and the federal government. Others are subjects of biomedical research, Rowell said....