Share This Page

'Military monkey' killed in break-in at zoo in Idaho

| Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012, 9:02 p.m.

BOISE — A break-in at Zoo Boise early Saturday left a Patas monkey dead from blunt-force trauma to the head and neck, and police were analyzing blood found at the scene to determine if it came from the monkey or one of two human intruders.

Two males wearing dark clothing were spotted by a security guard at 4:30 a.m. outside the fence near the primate exhibit, police said. Both fled, one of them heading into the interior of the zoo. Boise police used a thermal imager in searching the 11-acre zoo grounds but did not find the person.

“I've been here for 15 years, and we haven't had anything like this happen,” Zoo Boise director Steve Burns said. “It's unfortunate that we have to let kids know that something like this happens. Monkeys are always among the most favorite animals here.”

Patas monkeys, often called the military monkey, have reddish-brown fur with gray chin whiskers and distinctive white moustaches. They are widely distributed across central Africa south of the Sahara Desert and can live more for than 20 years in captivity.

During a search of the zoo before dawn, Burns heard a groan that at first he thought sounded human. It turned out to be an injured Patas monkey barely moving near the perimeter fence.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.