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Dealing with monkeys

HIYA :slight_smile: I’m looking for advice for dealing with monkeys eating the tops of papaya plants, and tearing up banana plants! The papayas especially, never get more than about 50 cms tall when the monkeys rip the top off and eat it. So we’ve stopped planting them. And bananas … they shred the plant in order to get the young core of the stalk. Most of the plants recover, but we want a sensible way to prevent monkeys from damaging the plants. We’d be happy to share with them ;), but as things stand, they’re not sharing with us!

We’ve thought about using an electric fence around a small area to see if this works. It’d be solar powered. Also, we’d have to cut the tall trees around the perimeter of the fence so monkeys wouldn’t be able to swing in. Even if they did get inside, they probably wouldn’t be able to jump out. I’d hate to have this happen. I can only imagine the small nightmares that might ensue!

We’re in the jungle of southern Thailand.

Thanks much, Troy

I have no idea if it would work, but I would try spreading human urine around the plants. It’s a great fertilizer and does repel some animals.

Ah those monkeys! We have a big problem with vervets in East Africa and I should be glad to see any clever ideas in response to your query.

Our dear monkeys take much of our mango and orange production and we have tried many different ideas. The only one that seems to work is to have a youngster running around with a catapult firing off missiles and shouting. But since that costs us a daily fee, it plays havoc with the economics. We run turkeys, ducks and geese among the trees so the fruit guardians serve a dual role but it still knocks a hole in our balance sheet. My neighbour lets off fire-crackers but that is anti-social and not cheap.

Thanks guys … I appreciate your responses.

Robert, we already regularly spread urine around the bananas, but not very much because we don’t know how much the plants can handle. I suppose, in order to have that repellent effect from the smell, we’d have to spread LOTS, and so we’d have to spread it far from the plants. I wonder if the smell’d repel us too :slight_smile:

Everard, we may very well someday have chickens and ducks running around. I’ve heard there are huge snakes in the area, so we’d have to have some way to keep the birds safe.

Putting up our fence is not a high priority, so I really don’t know when we might get around to it. Still fishing for ideas right now, but this is so far our plan.

Thanks much :slight_smile:

We get snakes a lot – the pythons are threat at night so we put our poultry in small houses made of pallets around the inside of which we nail chicken netting making complete coverage against most snakes. Mambas are slightly more versatile and the younger snakes can penetrate chicken netting [we lost a half-mature gosling at one point] – the answer seems to be goats which mambas seem to avoid. We housed our milk goats next to the poultry houses and have not had any issues since. Mambas can be quite bold – recently I have had a couple pass beneath me as I sit out in the evening.
In addition to your idea of chickens and ducks, I suggest geese and guineas - they are good at warning of snake attacks. Guineas do not mix democratically with chickens, however, and so much depends on your breed of chicken.

As to monkeys I guess it may depend on which type you have. Vervets can be very bold and habituate to humans, hence the need for catapaults to remove the habituation. In the maize-growing season, all in our neighbourhood play the game of ‘Pass the monkeys’ since when we drive them off, they become someone else’s problem. The early plantings of maize this year having mostly failed, we find it easy enough to drive the monkeys off onto neighbouring plots. This year, there are few monkey-feeding tourists around at the coastal lodges and so the monkeys are hungrier – the problem is that their natural habitat has been lost over the years and so they need new food sources. If we had forests instead of endless sisal plantations the monkeys would be less of a problem.

[Habituation to humans can be a real problem - one of my elderly neighbours fought a battle with pots and pans against a blue-balled male vervet in his kitchen the other day. The neighbour has had a triple by-pass surgery and so the battle was not advisable although the old man finally prevailed with a frying pan and subsequently – for him, not the monkey - a large glass of whiskey.]

Thanks Everard, for sharing your experiences and suggestions. I’ve shared your comments with my friend, and we’ll keep these things in mind :slight_smile: