Frontlines | Fleeing Monkey Fuels Simmering Fire

A monkey that split from the California National Primate Research Center at University of California, Davis, caused one group of protestors to go bananas last month. On Feb. 13, a rhesus macaque escaped from its cage during a cage change; researchers believed that the female animal had slipped down a drain. After a scan of the center's entire drainage system and a search of the local area, her whereabouts were still unknown in late February, marking the first instance in the center's history that an escaped animal had remained missing for so long. At the time of the escape, the monkey was free of disease, according to Dallas Hyde, center director. "It's been kept in a colony, free of the viruses typically found in monkeys, since birth. It's cleaner than most cats and dogs."

The escape, however, fueled an already simmering fire; local...

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