Rampaging Monkey Gangs Terrorize Thai Tourist Town

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Lopburi Cops Arm Themselves to Combat Aggressive Macaques

Rampaging Monkey Gangs Terrorize Thai Tourist Town
Rampaging Monkey Gangs Terrorize Thai Tourist Town

In the town of Lopburi, approximately 90 miles north of Bangkok, police officers are now armed with slingshots and tranquilizer guns to fend off aggressive macaque monkeys terrorizing the area. The once peaceful town has become infamous for its uncontrollable monkey population, prompting local authorities to take drastic measures.

Police Under Siege by Dangerous Primates

Police officers in Lopburi have reported being attacked by the aggressive macaques, which frequently climb over cars, steal food, and vandalize property. In response, the local police station has issued wooden catapults to officers, enabling them to fire at the unruly primates when necessary. Footage has emerged of two officers patrolling the town on a motorcycle, one of them launching small stones at the monkeys using a slingshot.

Special Unit Established to Tackle Monkey Menace

Police Major General Apirak Wechkanchana, commander of Lopburi Provincial Police, has formed a special unit to address the monkey problem. He explained that the slingshots are primarily used as a deterrent to scare the monkeys away, with actual firing of rocks reserved for situations where other control methods have failed.

“Our officers are aware of the potential danger from these monkeys. The slingshots will help to threaten the monkeys when necessary, but in most cases, they are used as a deterrent,” General Apirak stated.

Wildlife Department Steps In

The Department of National Parks, Wildlife, and Plant Conservation has also joined the efforts by capturing and relocating the most troublesome monkeys. However, their task is not without challenges, as the primates are familiar with tranquilizer guns and often evade capture by scaling tall buildings.

Nathi Krutthaka, Conservation Bureau Officer No. 1, revealed, “We had to hide our faces and conceal the tranquilizer guns so the monkeys wouldn’t see them.” The team managed to capture the troop’s leader, ‘Ai Krao,’ notorious for its aggressiveness, by sedating it before securing it in a cage.

An Ongoing Struggle

Lopburi has been likened to an apocalyptic hellscape due to its rampant monkey population, which has even taken over empty buildings. The situation worsened during the pandemic when food shortages led to massive gang fights among the monkeys. Attacks on cars, homes, market stalls, and visitors have become increasingly common.

Despite the dangers, locals are reluctant to remove the monkeys entirely, as they attract tourists who come to feed them sugary treats. The Thai government continues to grapple with the macaque problem, implementing measures such as creating sanctuaries, mass sterilization programs, public education on handling the animals, and relocating them to more suitable habitats.

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