The 39 monkeys, coatis and kinkajous were rescued over the past several months by ADI's Operation Spirit of Freedom, a concerted effort with the Peruvian government to crack down on illegal use of animals in circuses in the wake of the country's 2011 ban on circus animals.
Most of the animals had been snatched away from their mothers as infants and sold into captivity, likely after the mothers were killed so their babies could be seized. They had been kept alone, or rarely in pairs, often in abusive conditions.
For the past several months, as the rescues rolled in, the lucky animals have been kept at ADI's temporary shelter in Lima. Workers tried to help monkeys like Pepe recover from their often abusive stints in captivity.
"Just with us these past six or seven months he's learned a different kind of life," Creamer said. "That he could have freedom, and most importantly that he would never be hurt."