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Spider monkeys continue to be victims of hit and run

Puerto Morelos, Q.R. — Spider monkeys continue to be killed by inattentive drivers. Local authorities have made efforts to reintroduce the spider monkey into the region, however, motorists continue to kill them from hit and run accidents.

Another spider monkey was found dead on the highway outside Puerto Morelos, making it the third this summer. The monkey was found hit not far from the Botanical Gardens where they cross the road during the cool night hours to reach the reserve.

Armin Zapata, manager of the Botanical Gardens, says that earlier this summer, two other monkeys were also hit and killed by speeding nighttime drivers near the same location as the latest fatality. She says that neither the government or the ecological authority do anything to try and relocate them or limit their area.

She explained that the Botantical Garden is a 65-hectar refuge where the spider monkeys live in complete freedom. Inside the conservation center, they are protected. “Nowadays new spas are being built on the Cenotes Route and the animals feel invaded because there are a lot of people,” she added.

The spider monkey was once native to the eastern part of Mexico but has been placed on the endangered species list. Other than humans, the only natural predator to the spider monkey are jaguars and pumas.