Tokyobling's Blog

Wild Monkeys

Posted in Animals, Nature, Places by tokyobling on June 18, 2010

I do love zoos and museums of natural history but nothing beats meeting wild animals in their natural habitat. On a hiking trip one early morning (just after sunrise at about half past five in the morning), I came across some animal droppings I didn’t recognize. They looked human but they were green and didn’t smell. On the side of the narrow trail just a couple of meters in front of me as I turned a corner in the forest I met a small group of Japanese Macaque (Macaca fuscata fuscata). I have seen these creatures in the zoos around Japan many times but seeing them in the wild like this, just minding their business and not at all interested in me was just a different experience. Ever since I first came to Japan many years ago my dream was to one day meet wild monkeys, and finally, finally, I was rewarded. There were four of them, two females and two kids, one just a couple of months old and another one that must have been born during the winter.

Even being no zoologist or primate expert I can tell these monkeys have a fantastic life. Look at their coats, their eyes and skin, it’s absolutely the healthiest monkeys you will ever see. These have not yet been lured by the treat of fruit orchards or the left overs from campers. I must have spent half an hour with them before they finally decided it was time to move on.

I know some people live in areas where they meet monkeys daily, but for me, a die-hard tokyoite, this was an amazing meeting and truly one of the best days in my life. At closest I was only a meter or two from them. I will post more photos later, for now, Enjoy!

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