Date of birth: 1984
Place of birth: In captivity, Valencia
Arrival at MONA: March 2001

Marco’s story

He was born in Valencia and belonged to a trainer who trained chimpanzees and rented them for different purposes such as television ads, studio photos, movies, circuses, etc. Behind the scenes, Marco lived a life of hardship locked in a tiny cage on a truck, where Charly, Pancho, Paquito, Pepito, Romie, and Toni also lived. He was part of MONA’s first ever rescue and is one of the chimps to have best adapted to his new life. He’s an enigmatic individual and does not allow you to get to know him easily.


Marco was one of the most worked chimpanzees in his past life with his former owner, starring in ad campaigns for Estrella Damm and Teleline, among others. Unfortunately, you can still find postcards with pictures of him as a young chimp.


He’s one of the most elusive chimpanzees with people and is difficult to spot when there’s a visit because he doesn’t seem to care for the cameras.But among his own, he’s an essential part of social life. He’s intelligent and ensures peace in the group. Because of his disease caused by malnutrition, Marco is chronically ill and as such, must take daily medication.

His social life

He belongs to The Mutamba Group. Despite his heart-disease, he has been the dominant male for many years. Recently, however, he has been pushed down from his throne but is not making any efforts to try getting his position back at the moment.


  • He loves to use plastic bottles to drag along the ground to make noise during his shows of force.
  • He’s not afraid of storms and welcomes them with his particular “rain dance.”
  • He loves to ask his caregivers for the peel/skin of fruits from dinner that the other chimps have thrown out of the bedroom.

Fun Facts

  • When Marco is having dinner, he’s very impatient.
  • When Marco has his hands full of food, he can walk upright for several minutes.
  • Marco is Charly’s brother and Waty’s uncle, and his father was Paquito.

Marco’s group

He is part of the group we call the Mutamba*.

Mutamba: Strychnos spinosa is a native tree of tropical and subtropical Africa. After the rainy season it produces a sweet, juicy yellow sour fruit, a supplemental source of food for the rural population and a highly nutritious fruit that also feeds many animals, including the monkeys. In fact, it is also named “spiny monkey-orange”.

Do you want to Help Me?

































Be part of the solution for these animals today