Remember when St. Pete had a famous Mystery Monkey roaming free for three years before finally being captured? Well, now Tampa has its own mystery monkey.
No one has managed to snap a photo of the monkey or catch the little guy on video, but it’s been described to Tampa Police dispatchers.
“It was a relatively large monkey, I guess – about the size of a relatively big dog or something,” one caller reported. “Did someone lose a monkey or something?”
“It was a dark brown …. it looked two or three feet, more or less,” another caller described through broken English.
According to the Tampa Police department, officers are not actively looking for the monkey. They haven’t received any reports of it being dangerous and aren’t sure what kind of monkey it is.
The first call came in November 27 and the agency had received the most recent call Sunday. If officers spot the monkey, TPD says they will contact animal control.
Tampa Police released a YouTube compilation of 911 calls and the new Mystery Monkey is already gaining popularity. Reuters wrote about the monkey over the weekend. Huffington Post put that story up on its website under “weird news.” WESH in Orlando wrote about it and Tampa Bay’s Fox 13 interviewed several neighbors near where the monkey was spotted along the Hillsborough River near Lawry Park Zoo.
“Definitely, people have been up and down the street all day looking around, looking up in the trees,” Alex Llauget told the Fox affiliate. “That’s one way to get people to go crazy. Tell them there is a monkey around and they will start to go looking.”
The Zoo says all its monkeys are accounted for.
Tampa Police have poked fun at the situation, writing on its Facebook page that “there is no probable cause for this monkey’s arrest; however, we will work tirelessly to apprehend him.”
Not much has been written since the initial encounters, but the monkey business has the potential to go viral. St. Pete’s Mystery Monkey had its own Facebook page and was even the subject of a Colbert Report piece. That monkey, named Cornelius, now lives at an ecotourism zoo in Pasco County with his girlfriend, Luna. He was captured in 2012 after biting a woman feeding him.
Silliness aside, if any residents see the monkey, authorities say to call Tampa Police at 813-231-6130, not 911. Sightings can also be reported to Florida Fish and Wildlife.