Did you know that troops of monkeys will battle each other for turf?
The video below shows two monkey troops fighting each other on the Silver River in Ocala National Forest north of Orlando.
“Absolutely WILD footage from @capt.schwanke via TikTok of a troop of 30 monkeys crossing the river to fight another group. 45 min. turf war! We’ve been told this occurred in the Ocala National Forest. CRAZY!”
The monkeys in the video are most likely Rhesus Macaques.
Here more about them from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission:
“The core population of rhesus macaques is in central Florida around the Silver River. Individual rhesus macaque sightings have occurred throughout Florida, most likely a result of roaming monkeys originating from the Silver Springs population.
These sightings occur as far southwest as Polk County, as far northwest as Wakulla County and as far northeast as Flagler County.”
The monkeys are not native to Florida. The origin of their population can be traced back to the 1930s when the manager of a glass bottom boat operation released six monkeys in the area to attract tourists.
The population has grown to more than 400 monkeys today.
Here’s more from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission:
“In the 1930’s, the manager of a glass bottom boat operation reportedly released six rhesus macaques on an island in the Silver River to attract tourists to his boat tours.
The released monkeys swam to the surrounding forests and increased their numbers rapidly. As the popularity of these monkeys grew among tourists, the owner of Silver Springs Park released an additional six monkeys around 1948 on the north shore of the river in another attempt to boost revenue.
Since then, the population of rhesus macaques in the Silver Springs area and lands adjoining the Ocklawaha River has grown to upwards of 400 individuals at times.
Some private trapping and removal efforts have helped keep the population from drastically increasing over the years. As of 2015, the population inside Silver Springs State Park was estimated at 190 macaques, with the population along the Ocklawaha River at an unknown size.”