Nature Foundation Again Expresses Concern at the sharp rise in the number of Complaints of Nuisance Monkeys in the Community

Holds Stakeholder Meeting to Discuss Options to Control Monkey Population

The Sint Maarten Nature Foundation has increasingly been receiving complaints and reports of monkeys causing problems for residents in various districts, particularly after the passing of Hurricane Gonzalo. Even in districts where the Foundation has not recorded monkeys, such as on Front and Backstreet in Philipsburg, there have been sightings of the animals.


The Nature Foundation has been researching extensively on what can be done to control the population and has met with various stakeholders on some of the options in controlling the population: “With the worrying trend in the increase of the size of the monkey population we have been reaching out both locally and to our conservation colleagues in the region to come up with a plan on what to do to control the population. Of course there are many options such as capture and neuter/ spay or birth control, but one needs to be found which is cost effective and which does not cause pain or suffering to the animals. The issue is that these methods, even the less expensive options, cost tens of thousands of dollars to run effectively. Therefore the research phase of tackling this issue is critical,” read a Nature Foundation statement.


Many residents have been contacting the Nature Foundation regarding large groups of vervet monkeys (Chlorocebus pygerythrus), acting aggressively towards residents and pets, overturning garbage bins in numerous districts, destroying gardens and garden furniture and defecating on people’s property. The Monkeys have been known to act aggressively if they feel threatened and can also have a negative effect on our local flora and fauna. Monkeys are not picky eaters and will eat anything from bird eggs to ornamental and fruit plants and trees.


The Nature Foundation urges residents to not approach these animals and to contact the Nature Foundation so that the animals can be recorded. In the coming weeks there will be various exchanges with experts in various locations who are used to dealing with monkeys and other exotic invasive animals in order to come with recommendations to the authorities as to what should be the best way to approach this problem.


If a monkey, raccoon or any other unusual animal is observed contact the Nature Foundation at 5444267 or via in**@na*****************.org.