Mexico Authorities Investigate After Monkeys Drop Dead From Trees: REPORT

(REUTERS/David Moir)

Ilan Hulkower Contributor
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Howler monkeys in southeast Mexico are dropping dead from the trees suddenly prompting authorities to investigate the matter, CBS News reported Tuesday.

Local authorities have estimated that as many as 85 monkeys have died in this mysterious way, the outlet reported.

The Mexican environmental ministry issued a press release Monday informing the public that they were exploring multiple potential causes behind the deaths. “To date, various hypotheses are shared about the reason for these deaths, such as heat stroke, dehydration, malnutrition or fumigation of crops with pesticides, so studies will also be carried out to determine the cause,” the government said in the press release.

The ministry also mentioned the possibility of “any type of virus or disease” being involved in these deaths and stated they are testing for it, the press release said. Mexico said that anyone who came across a dead monkey should notify the appropriate authorities, the press release read. (RELATED: World’s Chubbiest Monkey Dies After Failing Fat Camp: REPORT)

High temperatures over 100 degrees Fahrenheit have been recorded in the areas where Howler monkeys, an endangered species, CBS News reported. A source from Tabasco’s Civil Protection agency told Reuters that three municipalities within Tabasco, a region in Mexico, have confirmed reports about mantled howler monkey corpses, an endangered species, according to The IUCN Red List, in their areas.

Volunteers have combed one forest collecting the corpses before placing buckets of water and fruit there for the monkeys to stave off more deaths, Reuters reported. The issue has received national attention. Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, who comes from Tabasco, theorized that the heat was a critical factor behind the deaths, Reuters reported. “I’ve been visiting the states for a long time and I have never felt it as much as now,” Obrador said of the heat.

Howler monkeys live in groups and prefer to sit on the topmost branches of trees eating leaves rather than maneuvering on the ground, according to the Encyclopedia Britannica.