‘Dangerous’ monkeys with ‘strong bite’ at large after troop breaks out of zoo

A pair of monkeys are still roaming free after a whole troop broke out of their zoo enclosure.

The band of nine crested macaques managed to make their way out of Děčín Zoo in Czechia on Monday (Jun 12), forcing the attraction to shut down.

A statement issued on the zoo’s website earlier this week said: "The entire troop of crested macaques escaped due to the fault of an uninvited visitor who damaged the electric fence at one of the enclosures yesterday evening.

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"Some monkeys remained in the zoo area, but others are already moving around it."

Seven have since been recaptured but two remain on the run – and experts have warned the animals could be dangerous.

The monkeys can grow up to 10kgs and although those brought up in captivity are not generally aggressive, they are capable of a strong bite.

The zoo added: "In case you spot monkeys, do not under any circumstances try to catch them yourself and inform us immediately."

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The zoo recaptured at least three of the monkeys by setting up cages full of food near to the primates' home.

Bosses at the tourist spot said an "unwelcome visitor" was to blame for the great escape after they damaged an electric fence.

A 42-year-old man has since come forward and confessed to deliberately tampering with the fence after he got a shock while trying to touch one of the monkeys.

It is unclear whether he knew breaking the device could allow the monkeys to leave their enclosure.

He later attempted to break into a nearby country pub and was arrested by police, who subjected him to a drug test and found traces of cannabis in his system.

The man, whose identity has not been revealed, has since been charged with vandalism.

Crested black macaques (macaca nigra), also known as the Celebes crested macaque, are native to the Tangkoko reserve on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, the island of Bacan, and several smaller nearby islands.

The species is classed as critically endangered, meaning they face an extremely high risk of extinction in the wild, and its numbers are still decreasing.

The apes are threatened by hunting, both as a pest and because their meat is considered a delicacy in Sulawesi, but they also face issues such as deforestation.

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