The former owner of Darwin the Ikea monkey has acquired two new Japanese monkeys.
Yasmin Nakhuda, who has referred to herself as a monkey mom, is now the owner of two new Japanese macaques, the same breed of monkey as Darwin, who was taken from Nakhuda's custody after he was found wandering around a Toronto Ikea parking lot in a shearling coat.
Toronto bylaws prohibit residents from owning primates.
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Nakhuda launched a lawsuit against the animal sanctuary where Darwin was taken after being seized by animal services. She dropped her attempt to have Darwin returned to her after 15 months, saying she realized she was unlikely to get the monkey back.
She was ordered by a judge to pay $83,000 to the sanctuary to cover legal fees.
While in her care, Nakhuda put diapers on Darwin and kept the animal with her at all times.
She now has Sumo, a six-year-old male, and Tibet, a female of the same age, according to a post on a Facebook page run by her supporters.
"We would like you to be part of the new life of Yasmin's two new monkeys," the post said. "While Tibet is feisty, inquisitive and active, Sumo is quiet and observant. Sumo is nevertheless the dominant male."
The group also posted videos of the two new monkeys.
Darwin made international headlines — and subsequently became a popular internet meme — when the primate was found wandering outside the North York Ikea in 2012.
Since being picked up by animal services, the monkey has been in the care of Story Book Farm Primate Sanctuary in Sunderland, Ont., east of Toronto.
Exotic animal laws inadequate, group says
According to the Animal Justice Canada Legislative Fund, a non-profit organization for the humane treatment of animals, Nakhuda purchased the new monkeys from the Northwood Zoo and Animal Sanctuary, located in Seagrave, Ont., which is now up for sale.
"Ironically, Story Book Farm is attempting to purchase the former Northwood Zoo property to expand its operations and be able to rescue more monkeys," the organization said in a release on Tuesday.
Nakhuda now lives in the Kawartha region, which Animal Justice said does not have bylaws against owning monkeys.
The organization said Nakhuda's new acquisitions highlight the inadequate exotic animal regulations across the province.