We often have the impression that monkeys like to do stupid things, but several studies have shown that they are equipped with a moral sense. According to scientists’ observations, chimpanzees have a habit of punishing those who break social rules. But monkeys are capable of behaving in far less commendable ways, and many examples of addiction, theft and even gangster behavior have been found in the wild.
Furious George, the Capuchin
In 2016, a Capuchin nicknamed “Furious George” caused panic in a Brazilian bar. After drinking cachaça from one of the glasses on the counter, the primate grabbed a knife and began hunting bar patrons. While the women could continue sipping their drinks in peace, the men were pursued until firefighters came to their rescue and caught the monkey. George was released into a nearby nature reserve before being recaptured: he had started terrorizing children.
Peace, the baboon
Fred the baboon and his gang of primates became famous preying on motorists in Cape Town, South Africa. The baboon chased terrified motorists before searching their cars from top to bottom. His talent was such that he could attack no less than five cars in five minutes. If the men and women were reluctant to leave their vehicles, Fred could turn violent. He thus wounded three of his victims. Several documentaries have focused on the monkey and immortalized his reign of terror. Fred was captured by police forces in 2011. When he died, scientists were shocked to discover that he had been shot more than 50 times. That hadn’t stopped him from continuing his misdeeds.
The island of Saint-Christophe in the Caribbean presents a big problem: alcoholic monkeys have invaded the place and caused a lot of damage. A wild population of these little monkeys, introduced to the island in the 17th century, quickly got into the habit of chewing fermented sugar cane (the island is famous for its rum production). These days, they patiently wait for tourists to turn their backs on their glasses and rush in to drink their contents. The island teems with drunken monkeys; this behavior became so widespread that scientists decided to study the effects of alcohol in primates with the goal of finding links to alcoholism in humans.
According to the study’s findings, monkeys can be classified into four broad categories: binge drinkers, regular drinkers, occasional drinkers, and abstainers. Binge drinkers drink pure alcohol in such large quantities that they eventually pass out. Before they pass out, they often behave violently towards their inbreds.
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The World of Animals & Nature is a magazine dedicated to wild fauna and flora from around the world. Through captivating stories and sublime photographs, the magazine offers a true visual safari in the heart of nature.