Wed, Sep 04, 2019 - Page 14 News List

Monkey climbs power lines in feat of high wire derring-do
台灣獼猴怕過馬路被車撞 走電纜功夫了

An infant Formosan macaque hugs its mother while breast feeding, in a file photograph.
小台灣獼猴緊偎媽媽懷中吸奶。

Photo courtesy of Monkey Land
照片:郭叔叔獼猴生態區提供

Yang Chuan-feng, a teacher at Ershuei Junior High School in Changhua County, passes through the Songboling area everyday on his way to work, which borders Nantou and Changhua counties. On Friday last week Yang made use of the final day of the summer school holiday to bring his son and daughter on a walk from Ershuei Village back to their home in Caotun Township, Nantou County. During the journey, while passing through an orchard of dragon fruit in Mingjian Township, Yang suddenly spotted a Formosan macaque walk out of the orchard noshing on a dragon fruit. After looking left and right, the monkey charged across a road, leading the way for a young macaque, which zipped across the road in the path of the adult’s footsteps.

Yang and his children waited to see how a third macaque, which hadn’t crossed with the others, would navigate the crossing by itself. Then Yang’s son, an elementary school student, suddenly exclaimed: “The monkey is walking across the power line!” Yang and his daughter looked up to see the macaque nimbly negotiate a double set of overhead power lines, walking along the lower cable with its feet and gripping the upper cable with its hands. The dextrous monkey at times used just a single hand to cling on to the power line, occasionally switching between its left and right hands.

Next, as if its previous exertions were just a warm-up act, once the macaque was sure it had crossed the road, it leapt through mid air onto a large tree and then smoothly jumped down through the tree’s lower canopies before safely landing on the ground.

While filming the macaque’s progress, Yang and his two children let out gasps of admiration at its acrobatic feat, which they said was just like watching a tightrope act at a circus. Later on Yang uploaded the video to Facebook and netizens praised the macaque’s ability, with one person asking whether a naughty child had dressed up as a monkey. However, most commentators observed the plucky monkey was lucky not to have been electrocuted.

Yang said while filming the macaque he was constantly on tenterhooks, concerned it might receive an electric shock and said that they were all holding their breath while watching, finally letting out a collective sigh of relief when it had safely descended to the ground.

Not all monkeys are able to safely cross electric power lines. In the past, several monkeys in nearby Sinyi Township have been electrocuted while scaling overhead power lines, which can result in a power outage when the force from the electric shock rips a power line from its footings.

(Translated by Edward Jones, Taipei Times)

於彰化縣二水國中老師楊傳峰,每天都要翻越南投彰化兩縣交界的松柏嶺到二水上班,上週五下午利用暑假最後一天,帶一對兒女從二水鄉返回南投縣草屯鎮途中,經過名間鄉一處火龍果園,突然看到一隻台灣獼猴從果園出來,嘴巴咬著一個火龍果,左右轉頭後即衝過馬路,後面跟著一隻體型較小的獼候,在大猴的保護下快速通過馬路。

楊傳峰老師和一對兒女原想等看後面的猴子,沒有跟上大猴,如何靠自己過馬路,其就讀國小的兒子突然大叫:「猴子在走電線!」,楊老師和小女兒抬頭一看,果然看到有隻獼候雙腳走在下層的電纜線,雙手攀著上層的電纜,身手敏捷地往前進,中間還不時單手攀著電纜,或左右手交換。

這隻猴子確定已通過馬路後,即從電纜跳下大棵的路樹,且彷彿練過輕功,往下一躍,站穩後再往下一層跳,幾個跳躍就從樹頂安全著地。

拍下台灣獼猴走電纜的過程,楊傳峰和兒女都對猴子有如馬戲團走鋼索的特技讚嘆不已,後來他把這段影片放上臉書,網友對獼猴的身手大呼驚彩,還有網友說「一個調皮孩子扮成猴子走電線?」,但更多人慶幸這隻大膽猴子未被電死。

楊傳峰說,其實他也一直為這隻獼猴捏把冷汗,擔心牠會被電到,自己和兒女屏息觀看,直到牠安全落地,三人才鬆了一口氣。

據了解,不是所有走電纜的猴子,都能像名間鄉這隻安全落地,信義鄉就曾有多隻走電纜的猴子被電死,若猴子被電死,有可能會因電擊引起供電饋線跳脫,造成停電事故。

(自由時報記者陳鳳麗)

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