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The apes’ home planet! After visitors who usually feed the monkeys stay away due to the coronavirus, hundreds of hungry monkeys swarm across Thai streets as “rival gangs” fight over food.


Hundreds of hungry monkeys were seen fighting over a single banana in Thailand after coronavirus caused a huge drop in the numbers of tourists who feed them.

The primates are normally well fed by tourists in Lopburi, central Thailand, but visitors have plummeted because of the COVID-19 virus which is gripping the world.

The animals were reported to be part of two ‘rival gangs’ made up of the monkeys who dwell in the city and those from the temple areas who were fighting over food.

At first the primates are seen running independently as they appear to look for food.

But then the noise of their cries increases dramatically as dozens chase a single monkey which seems to have a banana.

They are seen jumping on it and others as they fight over the food.

Even locals who are used to seeing the monkeys were shocked by their ferocity.

Onlooker Sasaluk Rattanachai captured the scene from outside a shop where she works.

She said: ‘They looked more like wild dogs than monkeys. They went crazy for the single piece of food. I’ve never seen them this aggressive.

‘I think the monkeys were very, very hungry. There’s normally a lot of tourists here to feed the monkeys but now there are not as many, because of the coronavirus.’

Lopburi is home to thousands of wild monkeys that roam the streets and buildings. Many live in the grounds of the city’s ancient Buddhist temples.

It is said to be divided between the monkeys which live in the temple areas, and those which live in the city, according to a report in the Bangkok Post.

With their territories divided by a train track, the two groups do not ordinarily meet, but ended up doing so on Wednesday, leading to the fight.

But the hunger experienced by the temple monkeys may have led them into the city in search of food.

And Somchai Unakong, 75, a resident, suggested to Thai news outlet Manager online that the fight might have been down to coronavirus.

He said: ‘Did this relate to the Covid-19 virus that is spreading? I wondered.’

Last month it emerged that the monkeys elsewhere in country were suffering because coronavirus is causing tourist arrivals to plunge by 44 per cent.

Primates living in a public park in Songkhla, southern Thailand, are usually well fed by visiting tourists from Malaysia and China.

Kind locals stepped in to give the monkeys fresh watermelons and tomatoes

There have been 59 cases of the virus in the Thailand, with one death.

However, in nearby China, where the outbreak began, more than 80,000 people have been infected, with more than 3,000 deaths.

And Thailand’s economy is reliant on Chinese tourists.

Tourism accounts for 18 per cent of Thailand’s GDP, with Chinese holidaymakers making up more than a quarter of total arrivals.

The country’s tourism minister previously warned a crisis on the scale of the Sars outbreak could cost an estimated $1.6 billion (£1.2 billion).


A man has been killed in India after a monkey threw a brick at him from the second floor of a building.

Local police confirmed that 30-year-old Mohammad Kurbaan was killed after being hit in the head with the falling brick in Central Delhi’s Nabi Karim area.

Kurbaan, who sold bags from a shop in the area, collapsed after being hit with the brick and was taken to hospital, where doctors pronounced his dead.

A First Information Report (FIR) was handed to an unknown individual by police under sections of causing death by negligence, the Indian Express reports.

While investigating, police discovered that the owner of the building the bricks were thrown from had left two bricks above a water tank to prevent monkeys from opening it.

Police said that a group of monkeys had managed to remove both of the bricks, throwing one at Kurbaan and hurling another onto a nearby terrace.

The incident, earlier this month, comes after the wife of a leader of a major political party in India has fallen to her death while trying to escape a monkey attack.

Sushma Devi, 50, was rushed to hospital but sadly died of her injuries.

She is the wife of Anil Kumar Chauhan, leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

The incident took place on September 9 when she was attacked by aggressive monkeys on the terrace of her house in Kairana city.

To avoid the attack she jumped down from the terrace.

Feral monkeys have been causing havoc in the Shamli district of Uttar Pradesh in northern India, with local authorities cracking down.

Municipal commissioner Anunaya Jha for the city of Mathura said: ‘Monkeys would be caught from Bankey Bihari temple area Vrindavan, Chaubia para, and Dwarkadhish temple area of Mathura in the first phase of the program and they would be released in the forest areas.’

Local residents claim there has been daily monkey attacks on children too.

Sushma was also a politician and was a district panchayat member, which is a district council in India.

She has been cremated at Mayapur farm.

In November 2019, two attacks claimed the lives of a 12-day-old baby and a 58-year-old woman in the city of Agra.

During the first attack, monkeys broke into a woman’s home while she was breastfeeding her child snatched the baby from her, and bit it to death.

In the second attack, a 58-year-old woman was bitten by monkeys as she went to relieve herself outside her home on the outskirts of the city and bled to death.

Monkeys have also inadvertently caused deaths – in January last year a woman hanging washing on her roof died after monkeys attacked and she slipped and fell.


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