Wild monkeys terrorize Japanese

Wild monkeys are very common in Japanese cities, however something that has drawn attention regarding these animals are the sequences of attacks. This type of behavior is considered rare, but since the beginning of July 2022, nearly 60 people have been injured by monkeys in the city of Yamaguchi, Japan. Among the injured are predominantly the elderly and children.

In order to contain the primates, the local police had to make use of tranquilizers. This species has recently increased in number, however it has already been considered vulnerable. Residents of the region even report break-ins in their homes – they enter through any breach they find. “I heard a cry coming from downstairs and I ran downstairs,” a father told the Japanese press. "That's when I saw a monkey on top of my son."

At the beginning of the attacks, the main victims were women and children. However, older adults and adult men also suffered injuries, most of them scratches and bites in the leg, neck and belly regions. As a justification for the disorder, researchers at the University of Yagamata, associated the increase in the population index of wild apes with the proximity to humans due to quantity.

Monkeys are considered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature to be a “least concern” species. However, this is not what the conflicts have pointed out. Because of this, the Japanese police reinforced the patrol in the region and advises the population to keep doors and windows closed.

Wild monkeys terrorize Japanese
Image: Reproduction

Monkey is captured and killed

Due to attacks by wild monkeys in Japan, they came under surveillance by authorities. One of the animals that is part of the “gang” that was hurting residents of the region was captured and killed on July 27, 2022. It was found inside the grounds of a school located in Yamaguchi.

He was spotted by hunters hired to do the job. The monkey is male, approximately 4 years old and on average half a meter tall. The local press reported that so far 58 people have been attacked by them, of which 34 were in their homes.

japanese monkey

The japanese wild monkey or Japanese macaque belongs to the Cercopithecidae family. Their natural habitat is in the forest, above 1500 meters of altitude. Its subspecies are M.f. beetle and the M.f. yakui. Environmentalists fear the extinction of the species as the places where they usually live are suffering from human actions.

Monkeys usually measure from 54 to 61 centimeters in height and weigh an average of 8 to 13 kilograms. Its physical characteristics are peculiar, with a reddish snout, short tail – an average of 8 to 10 centimeters – and gray fur. The dental arch resembles that of humans and has a weak, three-dimensional vision and keen hearing.

This species of monkey can also be known as “Macaca Fuscata”, which lives further north in the world, and has a good system for adapting to the environment. Monkeys have a coat that can vary from one to another, such as shades of brown, gray and yellow. And the thicker fur they have helps them cope with low temperatures throughout the year. The face region has almost no hair.

The species can also differ in terms of sex, as the male is larger, more robust and can reach up to 57 centimeters in height and 11 kilograms. Females, on the other hand, can reach 8.5 kilos and are 52 centimeters tall. These animals have advanced motor skills, can grasp objects firmly in their hands and walk on their hind legs.

Wild monkeys terrorize Japanese
Image: Reproduction

Habitat and Preservation

The Japanese monkey It has an incredible ability to adapt, as temperatures range from -15ºC to 25ºC. Each season will define its lifestyle and food. They are located more in the southern region of Japan. The macaca fuscata live in groups of about 20 to 30 primates, throughout their lives. To make this possible, the alpha male protects the group from predators and inconveniences along with other groups of monkeys.

It feeds on plants and small animals, that is, it is omnivorous. Their main foods are fruits, berries, seeds and even flowers. In general, this species is seen as a friendly trait and can get along well with other apes and even humans - although reality has taken a different turn in recent days due to the attacks.

Wild monkeys terrorize Japanese
Image: Reproduction

They enjoy physical contact with each other, especially in the first few months of their puppies' lives. The gestation of this species lasts an average of six months and generates only one offspring at a time. Upon reaching the age of two, the little monkeys must decide which way to go. Generally, males move away in search of another community, but females remain in the one they were born.

Actions that promote the preservation of these animals are common in Japan, as the habitat of these animals is compromised due to deforestation. This makes wild monkeys at risk of extinction.

What would you do if you lived in a region close to these animals?

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