Hundreds of rare wild monkeys — some carrying herpes — are on the loose in Florida after a tour guide brought the spunky critters to the state long ago.
Wildlife officials said that three pairs of Rhesus monkeys were transported to a park near Ocala in the 1930s by tour operator Colonel Tooey after a “Tarzan” flick sparked a fascination with the creature.
But the breed has since boomed and more than 1,000 of the monkeys now live in the state, wildlife officials say.
State officials have caught more than 700 of the monkeys in the past decade — most of which tested positive for the herpes-B virus.
That’s just great. One tour operator says everyone wants to see them and thinks that they are just fine in their adopted home. No, not really. This is NOT natural; introduced species can become invasive or cause an upset in the ecosystem at the detriment to other animals. It was irresponsible to import them and now look at this mess. But, now I will more quickly believe people when they say they saw a monkey in Florida!
Tip: Bob Blaskiewicz