Macaques have colonized a city in Thailand and converted a movie theatre into a cemetery

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

Move over, Florida Man, and make room for feral Florida monkeys with herpes

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

Best technology products of 2016

Today Product Hunt gave out its Golden Kitty awards to its favorite hardware and software products. Winners include Gboard by Google, Tesla Model S P100D, Tesla Solar Roof, a plug-n'-plant automatic cannabis home grow system, a flash card app called Tinycards, and more. Read the rest