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THE story of Shirley the once smoking orangutan made headlines around the world. She was kept in Johor Zoo, which is close by to one of the world’s best zoo, Singapore Zoo, and visitors would throw still-lit cigarettes at her while they watch Shirley damage her health with amusement. The management of Johor Zoo had failed to provide proper care for Shirley and she also had to live in a poorly managed enclosure without much to do all day everyday. Visitors would also throw garbage into her enclosure and feed Shirley junk food.

We had discovered during our investigation another orangutan kept in Johor Zoo whom we never saw let out of his dungeon like cage; Abu was living in atrociously hot and humid conditions with only a fan to try keep him cool. Abu has thick hair and his cage was totally barren, without any enrichment to keep his mind occupied.

Following an international campaign placing much pressure put on the Malaysian authorities, both orangutans were finally removed from Johor Zoo. We have news that Perhilitan want to send orangutans back to the awful Johor Zoo, when infact this zoo should be closed down. Updates will be posted here.

Video of Shirley smoking:


Direct link to video:



Press release of Shirley and Abu’s rescue:

Animals rescued from Johor Zoo


Other press releases:

Former chain-smoking orangutan adapts to new home

Malaysia: Shirley the orangutan ‘weaned off smoking’

Orangutan Rocky Horror Show

Orang utan quits smoking for good

Cigarette-smoking orangutan forced to go cold turkey

Smoking ape goes cold turkey

No butts, Shirley the smoking orangutan must quit