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Bushmeat: meat taken from wild animals that have been hunted for food. Killing endangered wild animals is illegal in most countries.
Deforestation: removing all the trees from a forested area. This is usually done by cutting trees down and then burning the stumps so no new trees grow back.
Every summer, scientists and students from Arizona State University travel to Africa to study baboons and chimpanzees in the wild. Other researchers go to Asia, South America, and Madagascar. They want to learn more about the amazing primates that live here. Sadly, many wild primates are in danger of going extinct. In the future, students may not be able to study these species in their natural environments.
In some parts of the world, people kill primates for food. In most places where this happens, this is part of an illegal bushmeat trade. Other primates are captured and sold illegally as pets. This is a horrible idea! Baby primates might look cute, but they do not make good pets. These animals need to be around their own kind and their own habitat. How else will they learn how to be good social primates?
Most primates around the world live in tropical rainforest environments. They rely on trees to provide food and protection from predators. Unfortunately, humans are cutting down many of these trees. Trees are used for firewood or to make into furniture and paper. People also cut down trees to make space for farms. This deforestation leaves primates without a home and without the food they need to eat to survive.
You don’t have to travel to South America or Africa to save the rainforest and the primates that live there. In fact, you can make a difference without ever leaving home. For example, you can reuse and recycle paper products. Paper is just one of the many things that are made from trees. If every piece of paper was recycled, we wouldn’t need to keep cutting down trees to make more.