Monkey steals and eats bread from Kovan bakery

Primatologist advises public to 'keep plastic bags away' when faced with a monkey

Screengrabs of monkey eating stolen bread from nearby bakery in Kovan (Photos: Yahoo SEA reader)
Screengrabs of monkey eating stolen bread from nearby bakery in Kovan (Photos: Yahoo SEA reader)

SINGAPORE — A monkey was caught on video eating bread stolen from a bakery outside of Kovan Heartland Mall, on Sunday (30 July) morning.

In a video shared by a Yahoo Southeast Asia reader, the primate was captured picking out and eating bread from a plastic wrapper on a nearby grass patch, at around 10.20am.

While purchasing bread from Baker Talent for his son, the reader had noticed a shop attendant from a neighbouring shop, MoneyMax, running into the shop to inform the bakery that their bread was being stolen by a monkey.

The bakery initially ignored the warning, thinking it was a joke. It was only after repeated mentions by the shop attendant, who pointed in the direction of the monkey, did people in the bakery start taking notice.

A crowd gathered to take videos and photos of the monkey. When the reader returned to the bakery 20 minutes later, approximately a sixth of the bread was left in the plastic wrap, and the monkey was nowhere to be seen.

What to do if you are eating and walk past a monkey

Primatologist Andie Ang shared that monkeys do not typically jump at humans to get the food they are eating.

"It’s not really about the type of food, but plastic bags (that attracts monkeys)," she said.

She shared that monkeys have learnt over time that plastic bags contain food, and advises the public to "keep plastic bags out of sight".

She also said that it is common for male long-tailed macaques, called "transients", to pass through neighbourhoods.

Ang advises bakeries to put their bread in shelves with sliding covers, should they put their bread outside of stores.

This is not the first time wild monkeys have been spotted outside forested areas in Singapore. A monkey was caught washing its hands in an outdoor basin of a Hougang estate in March this year.

Yahoo Southeast Asia has reached out to the National Parks Board and Aljunied-Hougang Town Council for information on recent monkey related incidents and follow up actions to be taken.

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