The warm, golden glow of sunlight is one of those gifts in life we so often take for granted, though not only does it make life on Earth possible -- it makes it worth living. But for the first time in their lives, a group of chimpanzees in Austria were allowed to see sunlight after being cooped up in cages indoors where they were subjected to laboratory testing, and a video footage captures that moving moment.
According to a report from The Sun, the chimps' were released from a facility in Austria where they had been exposed to diseases, like HIV and hepatitis, for purposes of medical testing. The animals, which numbered around three dozen, were moved to a reserve to live out their days following the lab's closing -- though adjusting to some semblance of normal has taken some time.
From The Sun:
The chimps were moved to a farm where keepers tried to reintroduce them to life outside -- but the process was not easy.
The animals had spent so much time inside they were confused when shown patches of grass -- and repeatedly threw them away.
But finally their moment of freedom came. And their keeper Renate Foidl said: "The chimps are incredibly happy. This is amazing, I have been waiting for this moment for so long."
The use of primates for medical research has long been a source of controversy among animal-rights activists, who consider such testing to be cruel and inhumane. Recently, the countless chimpanzees still kept in laboratories across Europe moved one step closer to the sunlight as well; last year, the EU passed new regulations which limits the use of animals for testing -- including an outright ban on great apes.
After all, every creature under the sun deserve a chance to bask in its glow, and to really live.