Thu, Sep 07, 2017 - Page 4 News List

Residents ask for help after monkeys try to abduct piglet

By Huang Shu-li and Jonathan Chin  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Two Taiwan macaques play with a piglet in a house in Yunlin County on Monday.

Photo: Huang Shu-li, Taipei Times

Two Formosan rock macaques on Sunday reportedly kidnapped a piglet from a sty in Yunlin County’s Douliou City (斗六), leading to pleas from residents for government help to deal with the monkeys.

The piglet’s owner, a teacher surnamed Wu (吳), said he went to inspect his pigsty after hearing loud and distressed squealing.

Two monkeys were carrying the piglet, jumping up and down while holding it, Wu said.

“The piglet escaped once, but the monkeys got it back. The piglet was screaming the whole time until it was dropped on the ground,” Wu said. “Some people who were nearby came over and saved it. The monkeys then went up into a tree and glared at us.”

A resident, surnamed Lee (李), said the monkeys were playing with the piglet.

“The rock monkeys were jumping about while carrying the piglet. I feared for its life,” Lee said.

Macaques have been pestering people in the county’s mountainous regions, as well as the Dounan (斗南), Dapi (大埤) and Lunbei (崙背) plains, the Yunlin County Department of Agricultural said.

Macaques are known for entering people’s homes and pigsties; the two involved in Sunday’s incident have terrorized Douliou’s Longtan Borough (龍潭) for years and taken numerous piglets from the same sty, the department said.

Multiple agencies and offices have tried to capture the macaques and failed, the department said, adding the pair are cunning and know the area.

The department has advised the borough warden to install animal traps, as encircling the monkeys has proven ineffective.

However, residents are not willing to install traps, fearing they could endanger people or pets, the department said.

The council said it is willing to send help to catch the monkeys.

The monkeys are a plague on the area’s persimmon, bamboo and tangerine farmers, Gukeng Township (古坑) resident Huang Teng-shih (黃登仕) said.

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