Monkey family could be making home in IOW forests

Published 4:42 pm Wednesday, June 25, 2014

ISLE OF WIGHT—A family in Isle of Wight County has reported seeing three animals that they believe are spider monkeys, said Kristin Wilda, spokeswoman for the Isle of Wight County Sheriff’s Office.

Debbie Jeter, director of Bear Path Acres, was called in to help catch them this past week. The family that reported seeing the animals took a video and released it to WTKR, channel 3, though it is hard to tell in the video exactly what is moving in the trees.

Jeter said that they are trying to keep the exact location of the monkey sighting out of the public sphere, as more traffic in the area will make finding them less likely.

“She was not supposed to release the video to the press, as we are still trying to catch them,” Jeter said. “We do want to catch them if they are out there.”

She also said the animals were described to her as a family of monkeys, as one of them is reportedly smaller than the other two.

So far, however, neither Jeter nor IOW animal control have seen any evidence of monkeys in the area.

“We have found no evidence of the spider monkeys,” said Jeter. “I have been setting traps and scouring the neighborhood. They are not coming to the food in the traps. I’ve talked to everyone in the area, and nobody else has seen them.”

Wilda said animal control has traps in the area, but the monkeys have not been sighted since the first report.