State officials want to remove its herpes-excreting wild monkeys

State officials want to remove its herpes-excreting wild monkeys

State officials want to remove its herpes-excreting wild monkeys

Although state officials have not specified exactly how the monkeys would be removed, they have indicated a willingness to fully remove the invasive macaques, creatures native to Asia which have settled in Ocala, Sarasota, and Tallahassee.

Researchers contemplating a developing populace of rhesus macaques in Silver Springs State Park say that instead of simply conveying herpes B, which is regular in the species, a portion of the monkeys have the infection in their spit and other organic liquids, representing a potential danger of spreading the illness.

Scientists studying the monkeys found that some of the animals excrete herpes through saliva and other body fluids, which poses a risk to humans. Be that as it may, the specialists, who distributed their discoveries in the CDC diary Emerging Infectious Diseases, say the issue has not been completely considered.

But the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission urges people that come in contact with them to keep a safe distance. "This can be done in a variety of ways", spokeswoman Carli Segelson said in an email. The population boomed to more than 1,000 and state officials worked to capture the animals as they were deemed a public health hazard.

Now almost 30% of the monkeys roaming the park are excreting the herpes B virus through saliva and other body fluids.

Samantha Wisely, a researcher at the University of Florida had been studying this non-native group of monkeys since 2015.

"The commission supports the removal of these monkeys from the environment to help reduce the threat they pose". Of those, 21 died from the disease.

Monkeys have also been spotted in Apopka, Fruitland Park and even in Pasco County. When the disease does occur, however, it can result in brain damage or death. At this point, population control may be more realistic than eradicating the monkeys. They had contracted it through monkey bites and scratches, according to the CDC. "Human visitors to the park are most likely to be exposed", wrote the study's authors, "through contact with saliva from macaque bites and scratches or from contact with virus shed through urine and feces".

Macaques were introduced to the Sunshine State's Silver Springs State Park as a tourist attraction nearly 100 years ago.

The animals' forebears were brought to an island in the Silver River early in the 1930s as a tourist attraction due to the popularity of the Tarzan movies. They draw people to the state's parks and have become notorious for their interactions with humans. The paper recommends that Florida wildlife managers consider the virus in future policy decisions.

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