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Wild monkey that terrorised Segar Road residents finally caught

SINGAPORE – After a two-week joint operation, a female long-tailed macaque that was responsible for harassing some of the residents living near Segar Road was captured by the authorities on Tuesday evening (May 2).

A female long-tailed macaque that was responsible for harassing some of the residents living near Segar Road is seen just before being captured. Photo: Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority of Singapore

A female long-tailed macaque that was responsible for harassing some of the residents living near Segar Road is seen just before being captured. Photo: Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority of Singapore

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SINGAPORE – After a two-week joint operation, a female long-tailed macaque that was responsible for harassing some of the residents living near Segar Road was captured by the authorities on Tuesday evening (May 2). 

Member of Parliament for Holland-Bukit Timah GRC, Liang Eng Hwa, told TODAY the monkey was captured by personnel from the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA), animal welfare group Animal Concerns Research and Education Society (Singapore) (Acres), and Wildlife Reserves Singapore (WRS) at around 6:45pm. 

The monkey, a sub-adult, was subdued by a dart from a tranquilliser gun before it fell onto a netting supported by the personnel on the ground. 

An AVA spokesperson said the monkey is currently in the care of WRS and it will be handed over to Acres for rehabilitation. 

It was reported last month that the monkey bit an elderly resident Tan Leng Choo, when he was lounging at the void deck of Block 472 Segar Road on Apr 17. 

Following the incident, AVA issued an update noting that there were 160 instances of wild monkeys attacking people or causing a nuisance in the Segar Road area in the last six months. The agency also described the situation as a “public safety risk” and was working with Acres to capture the monkey, after another monkey was removed.

The cluster of flats at Segar Road face Zhenghua Nature Park, which was recently expanded to provide a larger green space for residents and to increase the green buffer for the Central Catchment Nature Reserve.

An Acres spokesperson told TODAY that personnel from the joint operation had been monitoring the monkey’s movements in the last two weeks. Whenever the monkey had been sighted, the team on the ground had tried to administer a dart on the monkey where possible. 

The spokesperson added that this particular monkey had been conditioned to human feeding, which was why it had been entering homes. 

Over the next few months, Acres will try to recondition the monkey to reduce its dependence on humans for food and, at the same time, provide it with a wild diet to condition it to eat the natural food available in the wild. The rehabilitation process could take between a month and a few months. 

Mr Liang said that, while monkeys had previously been spotted near Segar Road given the area’s proximity to the nature reserve, this particular one had posed some safety concerns as it had bitten a few residents. 

It took a while to capture the monkey as the authorities wanted to do it in a safe manner, he said. 

He added that residents were happy and relieved to hear that the monkey was captured as they had concerns about it attacking people. 

Going forward, the agencies will continue to remind residents not to feed the animals to prevent them from returning for more food, said Mr Liang.

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