AP

Japanese city alarmed by biting, clawing, attacking monkeys

Jul 26, 2022, 2:15 PM | Updated: Jul 27, 2022, 8:04 am

This image from a video shows a monkey loitering around a home in Yamaguchi, Japan, Saturday, July ...

This image from a video shows a monkey loitering around a home in Yamaguchi, Japan, Saturday, July 23, 2022. People in the southwestern Japanese city have come under attack from monkeys that are trying to snatch babies, biting and clawing at flesh, and sneaking into nursery schools. (Twitter via AP)

(Twitter via AP)

TOKYO (AP) — People in a southwestern Japanese city have come under attack from monkeys that are trying to snatch babies, biting and clawing at flesh, and sneaking into nursery schools.

The attacks — on 58 people since July 8 — are getting so bad Yamaguchi city hall hired a special unit to hunt the animals with tranquilizer guns.

The monkeys aren’t interested in food, so traps haven’t worked. They have targeted mostly children and the elderly.

“They are so smart, and they tend to sneak up and attack from behind, often grabbing at your legs,” city official Masato Saito said Wednesday.

When confronted by a monkey, the instructions are: Do not look them in the eye, make yourself look as big as possible, such as by spreading open your coat, then back away as quietly as possible without making sudden moves, according to Saito.

A woman was assaulted by a monkey while hanging laundry on her veranda. Another victim showed bandaged toes. They were taken aback and frightened by how big and fat the monkeys were.

The monkeys terrorizing the community are Japanese macaque, the kind often pictured peacefully bathing in hot springs.

One male monkey, measuring 49 centimeters (1.6 foot) in height and weighing 7 kilograms (15 pounds), was caught Tuesday by the team with the tranquilizer gun. It was judged by various evidence to be one of the attacking monkeys and put to death.

But more attacks were reported after the capture.

No one has been seriously injured so far. But all have been advised to get hospital treatment. Ambulances were called in some cases.

Although Japan is industrialized and urban, a fair portion of land in the archipelago is mountains and forests. Rare attacks on people by a bear, boars or other wildlife have occurred, but generally not by monkeys.

No one seems to know why the attacks have occurred, and where exactly the troop of monkeys came from remains unclear.

“I have never seen anything like this my entire life,” Saito said.

___

Yuri Kageyama is on Twitter https://twitter.com/yurikageyama

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

moore redmond washington...

Associated Press

U.S. Supreme Court rules against Redmond couple challenging foreign income tax

The court ruled in the case of Charles and Kathleen Moore, of Redmond, Washington after they previously challenged a $15,000 tax bill.

2 days ago

Image:The New York Giants' Willie Mays poses for a photo during baseball spring training in 1972. M...

Associated Press

Willie Mays, Giants’ electrifying ‘Say Hey Kid,’ dies at 93

Willie Mays, whose singular combination of talent, drive and exuberance made him one of baseball’s greatest players, has died. He was 93.

4 days ago

Image: This photo provided by the Washington Department of Ecology shows a derailed BNSF train on t...

Associated Press

Judge orders BNSF to pay Washington tribe nearly $400M for trespassing with oil trains

BNSF Railway must pay the sum to a Native American tribe in Washington after it ran 100-car trains with crude oil on the tribe's reservation.

5 days ago

Photo: In this photo provided by Tieanna Joseph Cade, an amusement park ride is shown stuck with 30...

Associated Press

Crews rescue 28 people trapped upside down high on Oregon amusement park ride

Emergency crews in Oregon rescued 28 people after they were stuck dangling upside down high on a ride at a century-old amusement park.

5 days ago

juneteenth shooting texas...

Associated Press

2 killed and 6 wounded in shooting during a Juneteenth celebration in a Texas park

A shooting in a Texas park left two people dead and six wounded, including two children, on Saturday, authorities said.

6 days ago

Photo: Israeli soldiers drive a tank near the Israeli-Gaza border, in southern Israel, Wednesday, J...

Jack Jeffery, The Associated Press

8 Israeli soldiers killed in southern Gaza in deadliest attack on Israeli forces in months

An explosion in Gaza killed eight Israeli soldiers, the military said Saturday, making it the deadliest attack on Israeli forces in months.

7 days ago

Japanese city alarmed by biting, clawing, attacking monkeys