Mystery Monkey of Tampa Bay caught: What's next for captured Mystery Monkey

7:41 AM, Oct 25, 2012   |    comments
  • Share
  • Print
  • - A A A +

St. Petersburg, Florida -- The mystery monkey's view will now go from tall trees to tall bars.

He'll be in a cage for the next thirty days to make sure he's healthy.

If he checks out ok -- and all signs so far indicate that he will -- he'll likely head to a wildlife sanctuary.

Photo Gallery: Pictures of the monkey on the loose
More Pictures: First pics of the monkey in captivity

There, he'll finally be with his own kind, after almost four lonely years. And -- better news -- he'll be there with female monkeys, finding a potential mate.

There's a lot of emotion involved here.

When you watch exclusive video you'll see only on 10, recorded inside a Safety Harbor animal hospital, the monkey is tranquilized and looks pretty strange.

He's safe and fine, but he is out of it -- laying still, breathing evenly, and looking through barely-opened eyelids.

After he bit a woman in St. Petersburg, state officers decided they had to bring the monkey in.

Experts tried traps with banana bait and other methods for weeks.

Wednesday, a team of wildlife experts lured the monkey close, then shot him with a tranquilizer dart.

An emotional, exhausting chase that covered dozens of miles and almost four years finally ended with the monkey alive and safe. The monkey was a mystery no more.

"From day one, I was always in fear that he would get killed," wildlife expert Vernon Yates said, holding back tears.

"I did not want to find him dead in a car, I did not want to find him burned in power lines. I didn't want to find him shot and killed because he hurt somebody.

"He can't go back home to his native land, so he has to get locked up. Do I like it? Not really. What's the alternative? Death."

Yates, through his nonprofit Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation shelter, has worked with Florida Fish and Wildlife officers for years tracking the monkey across Tampa Bay.

There are several potential sanctuaries that may take in the monkey, Yates said.

Yates says he got death threats from folks who wanted the monkey to stay on the run. But he said he knew that would one day lead to the monkey's death through an accident or someone's actions.

The monkey is probably a descendant of monkeys used in Tarzan movies that were filmed at Silver Springs near Ocala, Yates said.

This monkey may have been forced from his colony by a dominant male monkey, and has been looking for a permanent home ever since.


You May Also Like...

Bikini Photos: 2012 Hooters International Swimsuit Pageant

Not a good idea: Woman rides on top of manatee

Sex Offender Search: Look up Florida Sex Offenders here

Yowtch! Teen accidentally shoots off his penis, testicle

PHOTOS: NFL Cheerleaders

Star Sick: Justin Bieber throws up on stage during concert

Amazing Survival: Poodle hit by car, goes on 11-mile ride in grill

Security Lapse: T-Mobile user given phone with Bucs quarterback's cell pics

PHOTOS: George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin crime scene pics

Cheerleader sex: Former Ben-Gal pleads guilty to sex with teen

Yearbook mug shot: Teen who posed in racy yearbook photos busted for underage drinking

Bikinis, mud, trucks: The Redneck Yacht Club

Photos: Ex-Charlie Sheen Goddess Bree Olson

Naughty Schoolgirls: Naughty schoolgirl night at Tampa club pictures

Sting: 31 pimps and prostitutes arrested (with pics)

Outrageous mug shot galleries...

Strange: Some of the most unusual mug shots we've seen

Notorious Women: Bad girls behind bars

Teachers: Teacher arrest mugshots

Jaw droppers: Open mouth mug shots

Smilers: Happy mug shots

Laughers: What's so funny mug shots

Prostitutes: Prostitute mug shots

Athletes: Professional athlete mug shots 

Porn arrests: Child porn arrest mug shots 

Local Mugs: Hillsborough County Mug shots

More unusual mug shots and galleries: 10 News slideshows and galleries


Most Watched Videos