Stop Illegal Smuggling of Apes Through Instagram

Target: Kevin Systrom, CEO of Instagram

Goal: Identify and ban all those who use their accounts in the illegal business of trafficking apes.

Traffickers that illegally smuggle and trade apes are using social media accounts to conduct their cruel and illicit business, according to a report by the New York Times. Ape smugglers are using sites like Instagram to advertise—posting pictures of gorillas, chimpanzees, and orangutans for sale.

Smugglers capture these endangered species from the wild and sell them into lives as prisoners, used for human entertainment in zoos or as part of the private collections of the wealthy. This is especially inhumane because apes are social animals, and are torn from their families. Often, baby apes are chosen because their small size makes them easier to smuggle, and traffickers will kill the rest of the family in order to seize the baby.

Trafficking is a billion dollar business, profiting from the exploitation of endangered animals and pushing them closer to extinction. Social media sites like Instagram that have become a part of this illicit and despicable business could instead be protecting these innocent creatures. Demand that Instagram take any and all steps necessary to shut down trafficking accounts.


Dear CEO Systrom,

According to a recent New York Times report, illegal ape traffickers have been using Instagram to conduct their cruel and inhumane business. Smugglers post pictures of gorillas, chimps, and orangutans for sale, making Instagram complicit in their illicit activities.

Ape traffickers capture and sell endangered species, often killing ape families to steal and smuggle the babies. Instagram has a responsibility to combat this illegal cruelty and protect innocent apes. I urge you to ensure that all possible steps are taken to identify and ban users who post on their Instagram accounts as part of the ape trafficking trade.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Brent Moore

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  2. Jaime Perez says:

    People can be so cruel and inhumane to the innocent, especially when it comes to making a profit. This horrible practice must be stopped now. Babies suffer the most from this cruel process.

  3. instagram you are colluding with these evil monsters ,you need to be shut down

  4. People who buy these animals from traffickers should be fined very heavily and then sent to jail for at least 8 years….that would be the only way to get this stopped. There will be NO traffickers if there are NO buyers!! The buyers are the real criminal culprits, who we need to deal with….including Chris Brown or anyone like him who think it is their right to buy a wild animal…IT IS NOT ANYONES RIGHT!!!!!!!!!!!! MAKE THE LAWS NOW AND IMPLEMENT THEM!!!

    • Carol Brandt says:

      Agreed, although I think both seller and buyer are equally guilty and evil.

    • I agree ALL parties involved need to be held accountable. And I’m certain both have some kind of transaction records or contact for future sales SO START torturing the information out of these dirtbags so this animal trade finally be stopped.

  5. KatWrangler WELCH says:

    WTF does anyone need to buy an ape for? NONE!
    Find and prosecute the sellers and the buyers.

    This world is getting more and more bizzare every day.

  6. I despise Instagram for this very reason and no longer use it, none of our family members do. It’s out of control with zero regulations, these animals suffer so for greed and nobody stops it.


  8. Lisa Zarafonetis says:

    Signed & shared

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