Primate Foundation of Arizona (PFA)

The Primate Foundation of Arizona (PFA) was established in 1970 and marked the beginning of a program devoted to the biomedical and behavioral research of captive chimps. PFA’s primary goal was to apply their research findings towards the improvement of captive management of chimpanzees.

After almost forty years of caring for chimpanzees, PFA closed its doors in 2012. While the chimpanzees themselves were relocated to other facilities, the Director of PFA, Jo Fritz (who passed away in April 2012), chose to donate most of the remaining resources to CARTA, with the one stipulation that they be made available to the widest possible range of scientists interested in better understanding both humans and chimpanzees. Some of the key resources included:

  • Skeletal Collection: 35 complete skeletons and health records of chimpanzees who died of natural causes or were euthanized to ease terminal suffering
  • Library: 368 primatology books, some rare and out of print
  • Reprint Collection: approximately 6,850 reprints of research articles pertaining to the care and research of captive chimpanzees
  • Databases: containing observational logs of chimpanzee behavior and medical records of same chimpanzees
  • Serum Bank: blood serum collection from PFA chimpanzees during the course of routine veterinary care

After receiving these valuable resources, CARTA began cleaning, cataloging, and scanning the various collections which now represent a major portion of the online Museum of Primatology (MOP).