Florida’s Latest Problem: Herpes Infected Feral Monkeys

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People first became enamored with the Rhesus monkey after it appeared in a 1930s Tarzan movie which prompted one tour operator to bring a handful of the animals to populate his Silver River State Park tour. They were originally contained on a small island near the Silver River, but since learned to swim and have begun populating areas as far away as Jacksonville. There are now over 1000 monkeys and of the 700 caught in the past decade, most have tested positive for the Herpes-B virus.

They are now considered a public health hazard, but the tour operator explains that the monkeys are a crowd favorite and doesn’t want them moved away. The Rhesus monkey is known to be aggressive with humans and officials are warning people to stay away from them. This is what happens when your movie obsessions go too far, people!

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