The city of Lopburi om Thailand has allegedly been overrun by gangs of wild macaques, resulting in several "no-go zones" for humans. As one resident told The Guardian: "We live in a cage but the monkeys live outside."
The macaque population in Lopburi has doubled in just three years. The monkeys were frequently fed bananas by tourists, by after the coronavirus lockdowns began and tourism froze up, they were forced to seek alternative nutrition — typically junk food and fizzy drinks stolen from local stores or given them by frightened humans. All that sugar might be making them feistier, however, both for fighting and for fucking.
But my favorite most horrifying dystopian detail comes from France 24 (which is almost identical to the Guardian, except for this paragraph):
An abandoned cinema is the macaques' headquarters -- and cemetery. Dead monkeys are laid to rest by their peers in the projection room in the cinema's rear and any human who enters is attacked.
I can't find many other details about this but wow, what a time to be alive.
Local wildlife authorities plan to embark on a sterilization campaign to help control the population of wild horny sugar junky cinephile monkeys. According to news reports, they aim to fix 500 macaques by Friday, although I couldn't find any details on how they plan to execute this, or whether it involves an epic Boss-level-esque journey into the Great Macaque Movie Theatre Morgue.
Macaque attack: humans try to take back Thai city from monkeys [Agence France-Presse] Read the rest
The badly written dystopian fiction that is our global pandemic continues. Read the rest
“There’s normally a lot of tourists here to feed the monkeys but now there are not as many, because of the coronavirus,” a person in Lopburi, Thailand told a News Parliament reporter. As a results hundreds of the ravenous animals are "terrorising" the city "in search of food."
From the article:
Even locals who’re used to the animals’ behaviour appear stunned through their ferocity.
Onlooker Sasaluk Rattanachai, who captured the scene from out of doors a store the place she works, mentioned: ”They seemed extra like wild canines than monkeys.
“They went loopy for the one piece of food. I’ve by no means noticed them this competitive.
”I believe the monkeys had been very, very hungry.
Photo by Audronė Locaitytė on Unsplash Read the rest
'Colobus monkeys live in families with several females sharing in the care of newborns, a behavior called allomothering'
Back in 1938, a local Florida cruise operator called Colonel Tooey — "Colonel" was in fact his first name, according to the New York Times — let loose about a dozen rhesus macaque monkeys onto a man-made island inside Silver Springs State Park. According to National Geographic, Colonel had big plans to build a Tarzan-themed attraction there.
But naturally, the monkeys escaped, and over the years, multiplied. The International Primate Protection League tried to keep their eye on them, and they (apparently) became a bit of a tourist attraction. Eventually, wildlife officials tried to tame the population, approving the removal of more than 1,000 of these feral macaques. As of 2018, a study in the Journal of Wildlife Management estimated that there were still around 300 of them now roving around the strip malls of suburban Florida. And some of them have migrated more than 100 miles away, as far as Jacksonville.
And about 30 percent of the remaining feral rhesus macaques also have Herpes-B, also known as "monkey herpes."
Monkey herpes is rare in humans, with only about 50 known cases (none of which were actually contracted from monkeys). But it can kill a person in just six weeks.
More and more of these rhesus macaques have been found roaming around residential neighbors in Florida. While they tend to be pretty skittish, they can also get aggressive around humans; they've even been known to organize mass raids of deer feeders in Florida. So local authorities are raising red flags, in hopes of preventing the inevitable Florida-Man-Gets-Bitten-By-Feral-Herpes-Monkey headlines. Read the rest
Farmers in the Malnad region in South India are reportedly dying their dogs' fur with tiger stripes to scare off bands of marauding monkeys. Apparently the monkeys are wreaking havoc on their corn crops.
According to the Deccan Herald, "Srikanta Gowda, a resident of Naluru village, Thirthahalli taluk, said he had seen a tiger-like doll used as a scarecrow near Bhatkal in Uttara Kannada district four years ago. He brought it to the village and placed it in his areca plantation. Surprisingly, monkeys were frightened after seeing the doll and did not return to his plantation."
Based on that success, Gowda had the idea to enlist his dog as a kind of roving tiger-scarecrow.
Read the rest
Texanne McBride-Teahan of the St. Louis suburb Creve Coeur, is fighting in court to keep her emotional support animals: a black-capped capuchin monkey named Paula, a patas monkey named Zoey, and a bonnet macaque named Kalie Anna. Shortly after McBride-Teahan moved in to her home, neighbors apparently complained. From CNN:
Monkeys are considered an "inherently dangerous animal" along with alligators, lions and pythons and are thus prohibited in residential areas, according to the City of Creve Coeur...
McBride-Teahan considers the monkeys emotional support animals and has a doctor's letter and registration cards for them, she told CNN through Facebook. The animals help her cope with post-traumatic stress disorder related to an incident when she was a teenager, McBride-Teahan added...
"Monkeys are little. Less than 9 pounds. Pictures show they aren't dangerous. To me they are life savers for my PTSD. We just want to live in peace," McBride-Teahan told CNN.
After all this, the monkeys may need emotional support humans.
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Many non-human animals, from apes to rats to crows, appear to be able to keep track of the order of items in a list. Read the rest
Here's a guy who went to a monkey park in Takasaki-yama in Japan and donned a monkey park worker uniform for a day to see what it was like. One reason Japan has monkey parks is to get them used to eating food there so they don't invade nearby farms. The monkeys didn't really like having a stranger tend to them, and they made their displeasure known by chattering. They settle down pretty quickly, though. My favorite part was when an experienced worker ran through the park with a cart loaded with sweet potatoes. The monkeys chased after him and picked up the sweet potatoes as the fell off the cart.
I went to a monkey park near Kyoto with my family in 2010. Here's a video:
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This little monkey could certainly jump on the bed without falling off and bumping his head.
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Sometimes people steal cars to pay for that sweet lady H, but this fella allegedly stole a car, possibly to keep the monkey on his back in diapers. Read the rest
Neuroscientist Nicho Hatsopoulous and his team taught monkeys that lost limbs through accidents how to control a robotic arm. The work has profound implications on what they call the brain-machine interface.
Via University of Chicago
“That's the novel aspect to this study, seeing that chronic, long-term amputees can learn to control a robotic limb,” said Nicho Hatsopoulos, PhD, professor of organismal biology and anatomy at UChicago and senior author of the study. “But what was also interesting was the brain’s plasticity over long-term exposure, and seeing what happened to the connectivity of the network as they learned to control the device.”
Here's the basic setup in a similar lab with non-amputee monkeys. The monkey gets juice or some other treat for successfully completing the tasks.
Here's a detailed lecture on the current work in the field:
• Changes in cortical network connectivity with long-term brain-machine interface exposure after chronic amputation (via University of Chicago) Read the rest
Feels good, man. Read the rest
Jake Gardiner was walking in the woods in the foothills of La Crescenta, a suburb of Los Angeles, when he heard rustling in the trees. He recorded video on his mobile phone and later noticed what many are saying looks like an ape-like creature swinging around the branches.
“It could be some kind of ape, it also could be a bear, it could be a large bird,” says Andrew Hughan, a spokesman with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.
He added that it could be someone's pet but it's difficult to say based on the blurry video and lack of physical evidence.
“It’s an interesting mystery right at the moment, and we'll see what happens," he says.
(Los Angeles Times)
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Tourist Maykool Coroseo Acuña, 25, was lost in the Bolivian Amazon for nine days. He says that he was only able to survive thanks to "a group of monkeys, who dropped him fruit and lead him to shelter and water every day." And that isn't even the strangest part of the story surrounding Acuña. From Elizabeth Unger's fascinating article in National Geographic:
(Tour organizer Feizar Nava) had invited the tourists at the lodge to participate in a Pachamama ceremony—a tradition involving coca leaves, candles, and cigarettes—to thank Pachamama, or Mother Earth, for giving them permission to enter the forest.
When Maykool was asked to join the ceremony alongside the group, he had refused, Feizar said. And when a guide had returned to his cabin to check on him, he was nowhere to be found. The amount of time that had passed between when Maykool was last seen and when someone went back for him was only five minutes.
Panicked, Feizar and his guides checked every inch of the lodge. Maykool wasn’t there. The group headed out into the rainforest with flashlights. They searched until five in the morning, to no avail. Maykool seemed to have completely vanished.
“It’s because he offended the Pachamama.” Feizar said. “He didn’t want to participate in the ceremony.”
"Lost Tourist Says Monkeys Saved Him in the Amazon" (Nat Geo) Read the rest
Dangit human. put some muscle in it
This little monkey is trying her hardest to train a limp-limbed human how to crack open a nut with a rock. When she realizes the human isn't making much of an effort, she looks up with an expression that says, "Wtf‽ Help me out here, hairless ape covered in fibers!"
Similarly: Monkey teaches human how to crush leaves Read the rest
To these monkeys, people are just machines that make dental floss. Read the rest