More Tampa Bay area residents report seeing mysterious monkey
By Paul Mueller
CLEARWATER, Fla. (WFLA) – More Tampa Bay area residents have reported seeing a mysterious monkey.
The monkey has been spotted at least four times in the past two weeks. Viewers previously took video of what is believed to be the rhesus macaque as it took a leisurely stroll through Safety Harbor. It’s also been spotted in Hudson Beach and Lake Tarpon
The most recent report places the primate in Clearwater. An officer from the Florida Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission happened to be in the right place at the right time.
The officer spotted the monkey at the Eddie C. Moore softball complex on Drew Street. He brought in other officers and experts, but, in the end, the monkey managed to escape.
On Thursday night neighbors who live just blocks away from the sports complex spotted the primate. “That is the monkey,” said Cinthia David, as News Channel 8 showed her the video. “Yes, that is the monkey.”
David’s son, Juan, is trying to figure out how a monkey made its way to their street. “I don’t know how a monkey can get here,” Juan Mojica said.
Mike Scheibelhut has seen reports about the monkey. “It travels well, apparently,” he said.
FWC believes officers captured the same type of monkey in St. Petersburg in 2012.
One local dad said it’s interesting to hear about the monkey, although a little scary. “It’s a little concerning but it’s also really interesting, too,” Alden Sherman said.
Sherman has two sons. “I’d call for my dad and if he’s not there, I’d just run,” Alden, Jr. said about potentially coming face to face with the monkey.
Wildlife expert Vernon Yates said stay away and call experts if you see the monkey, who travels at around five miles per hour. He said the primate’s day on the run will eventually come to an end.
“It may not happen today, it may not happen tomorrow, but we will get him,” Yates said confidentially.