Threats to Primates

The primates of Africa face a multitude of critical threats. Our closest relatives are nearer to extinction than ever before. An estimated 3,000 great apes are lost every year to the illegal wildlife trade, the illicit hunting of endangered species, and widespread habitat destruction and degradation. PASA and our member organizations across Africa are working to stop the devastating effects of these practices before it’s too late.



The illicit hunting of endangered species, known as the bushmeat trade, is expanding rapidly and has become the most pressing threat to Africa’s primates.


The illegal wildlife trade, which extends from Africa to China, the Middle East, and elsewhere, involves capturing wild animals and putting them in cages as pets or in zoo exhibits.

Habitat destruction and degradation. As humans expand into wild habitats, primates are caught in the crosshairs. For example, forests all over the developing world including Africa are being decimated to accommodate palm oil plantations. This is currently a highly unsustainable practice and is a danger to struggling wildlife populations, local communities, and ultimately entire ecosystems.

PASA educates global communities about the industries perpetuating the destruction of primates’ forest homes.


Human-Wildlife Conflict occurs when humans and wildlife compete for the same living space.  In such conflicts, humans typically come out on top. The challenge we face is to find reasonable solutions that will ensure the survival of both wildlife and humans.

Ebola Virus.This deadly virus has devastated human and non-human primates alike. The highly contagious disease has claimed the lives of thousands of apes and monkeys and threatened the existence of some of the most critically endangered great apes in the world.