Primate One-Upmanship: The Sunglasses Heist.

Well blow me down!  Half a world away from the wiley baboons of the Cape Peninsula, (South Africa) here in South East Asia,  Cambodia – the Angkor Wat troop of long-tailed macaques (Macaca fascicularis) have similar tactics, grabbing an item and waiting for the gullible human to offer decoy food in exchange.


Co-conspirators waiting for the right break…..
Here they are: the gullible people, who dished out the biscuits and note the sunglasses worn by Mr.                                           “Oh, I am so cute, you will feed me….”, says Little Miss Long-Tail.
“There now, here’s the biscuit …. give me the glasses?”
“The handover; got the glasses, here have some more food…..”

There you have it.  Feed wild animals, habituate them to receiving food, they become pests and then they “steal” items in exchange for food.  Clever creatures.

16 thoughts on “Primate One-Upmanship: The Sunglasses Heist.

  1. Little do these tourists realise that by feeding the macaque, they have created a problem which will have a long-lasting effect … 😦

    1. The extent of it is bad for the animals. I dug a little deeper into the situation in Cambodia and it’s not encouraging, both illegal poaching and the pet trade are thriving.
      Thanks for your comments, Lynette. Back home again, and settling into routine. More stories coming.

    1. I despair… and don’t we see it happening all over; “dumb” and so exploitative. In Cambodia apparently illegal poaching and the pet trades are thriving. Not much hope for ‘wild’ creatures.
      Apologies for the slow response Eliza. I’m finally home again… getting back into routine. Thanks as always for your interest and comments.

  2. Yep, just like here the humans are to blame and the monkeys will pay the ultimate price for our thoughtlessness… But evidence too just how intelligent they are!

    1. Yes it’s not an encouraging story, added to this roadside exploitation, is the illegal pet trade.
      Dries, thanks as always for your comments…. sorry for the slow response. I’m back after my travels and knuckling back down into routine. More stories on the way.

  3. All seems cute and well until a tourist gets scratched or bitten and then, as Dries says, the monkeys end up paying the ultimate price.

    1. It’s a very sad situation, as i dug deeper to find out the extent of the problem, it is as you say the monkeys end up paying the price. More stories to follow….
      Apologies for the slow response Anne. I’m back home and in for the fray… Thanks as always for your interest and comments.

  4. Priceless photos (especially the first one) of an ultimately sad dynamic. (If I were visiting from another planet and saw this lot, would likely decide that the ones with tails are the brighter of the two primate species …)

    1. I dug deeper into the situation of the macaques at the temples and it’s not encouraging. They are exploited for ‘our’ entertainment, rather than respecting their wild ways they are tamed with food and become beggars. So sad. Apologies for the slow response to your comment Carole, i’ve finally returned home and am now back at my desk!

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