2018 babies


DOB: 27/04/18
Mother: Dolly
Father: probably not Grandee
Characteristics: Big protruding ears like his brother Baty. He’s like a bit of Spocky and Baty mixed together hence his name Bocky 🙂

Poor Spocky he’s no longer the baby of the family 🙁

It must be quite a shock to him….

” Why’s mum ignoring me ? ” Spocky sulks…


DOB: 18/05/18
Mother: Aggy
Father: Grandee
Characteristics: Poppy looks really different from her sister Lilly. Everything about her is big – big eyes, ears and size. Considering how small and svelte her mum Aggy is it’s really a miracle that she was actually delivered and well without much signs suggesting of difficulty like sub-conjunctival ecchymosis and facial bruising !

She really is a big girl at birth !

She’s kind of look more like Vivy 🙂

She has inherited her dad Grandee’s prominent philtrum and definitely his strength too. I could see her already quite a handful for mum to restrain already even at only a few days old 🙂

She certainly isn’t happy just being held all the time !

Even mum Aggy has to struggle to control her 🙂


DOB: 20/05/18
Mother: Bossy
Father: Cocky
Characteristics: Another Bossy Jr. look-alike just like Bessy born last year – in other word, another cute baby again ! Except this one has bucked the trend and is a boy instead. Bossy must be a bit disappointed for boys don’t swell her rank. But as her clan dominates the troop ( she has at least 4 or 5 grown daughters and quite a few grandchildren under her belt too ) she shouldn’t mind 🙂

Is Bossy less loving towards boys ?

It must come as a shock to baby Bucky….

But everything happens with a reason… Bossy still cares about Bucky 🙂

Bucky I dare say is the cutest baby of the three that I’ve documented from her. He really does have that classic monkey look to him !

My first impression of Bucky – what a handsome boy he is !


DOB: 28/05/18
Mother: Ridgy
Father: Grandee
Characteristics: Fify just reminds me of Dopey the moment I laid eyes on her ! With her big dark round eyes and small face she has that angelic look to her just like Dopey ! Unlike Dopey she doesn’t fret over milk in fact she doesn’t seem to mind going without it so much so she is perfectly comfortable without mum so it appears so far ! Cute and doesn’t bother she’s what most mothers hope for !

She’s not as clumsy as Dopey though…..

But she’s no less as mischievous and adorable 🙂


DOB: 28/05/18
Mother: Lancy
Father: unknown
Characteristics: All Lacy’s kids have light auburn hair and Lacy is no exception ! She actually does look like Reddy’s daughter so I suspect the two might have the same father ! It’s difficult to know more about Lacy as is per tradition the Lacy household shuns the Arroz-run media 🙁 She wants something classy like Vogue 🙁

Lancy never leaves her out alone…..

And I’d be lucky to spot her with mum at all 🙁


DOB: 04/06/18
Mother: Reddy
Father: Not sure
Characteristics: Auburn coat, almond-shaped eyes, baby Dimpy looks nothing like his brother Dopey born 2 years ago and it probably is a safe bet to say they have different fathers too ! My bet is on Grandee as I’ve seen him coddling and grooming Reddy last December – whether this is a standard post-coital behaviour or not I really don’t know 🙂 It’s all a less-than-educated guess 🙂

But they are brother and sister nonetheless 🙂

As a girl Dimpy seems to receive more protection than Dopey did. In fact Reddy is so protective of her little girl she always hides with her up in the trees or down in the undergrowth even it’s their turn to take the road to forage and to be fed. I don’t ever recall her being so secretive with Dopey ! It just seems they do prefer girls to boys…..

Boys will leave mum eventually, but not girls….

But when she does feel safe to emerge with her baby girl it’s just so lovely to see how she interacts with baby Dimpy – things might be less chaotic and funny with Dimpy as she certainly isn’t as clumsy but hey I don’t think there will be another clumsy baby like Dopey ever again !

But Dimpy is lovely to watch just as well !


DOB: 06/06/18
Mother: Lucy
Father: unknown
Characteristics: Brother of Charly Coffy has a coat not as dark as his brother’s but with a tinge of coffee-ground brown hence his name 🙂 More extrovert than Charly Coffy wants to explore from the get go ! He’s pretty advanced for a a baby, though not in the same league as Spunky, let alone super babies like Spocky and Bocky !

His brother Charly would never try to leave his comfort zone….

but not Coffy – look at his determined lil face 🙂

He is going to be a handful for mum as he can’t wait to exercise his little arms and legs in earnest !

Oh yes he’s a bit clumsy though 🙂


DOB: 06/06/18
Mother: Sally
Father: unknown
Characteristics: Another baby with a darker coat he has Mickey’s look but not as cuddly as he’s quite lanky, with long arms and legs seemingly out of proportion with his body. The first thing that strikes you is that he seems very well endowed !

He’s got long arms and legs !

He hasn’t got a third leg 🙂


DOB: 06/06/18
Mother: Gaby
Father: unknown
Characteristics: Gingy is likely to be mum Gaby’s first born. Unlike most other babies born this year Gingy’s coat is more yellowish than auburn. He is one of the cutest babies born this year and he stands out with his puffy eyes 🙂 Confusion has arisen as he was once named as Puffy and his mum Peggy but I have finally settled with the names Gingy & Gaby as I think these two suit them better.

Isn’t he cute ?

With mum Gaby….

Mum Gaby is probably one of the older daughters of Haggy which makes Gingy a grandson of Haggy 🙂

Notice Gaby’s prominent forehead with her high hairline….

Haggy with Nony…. and certainly you’d see the resemblance here !


DOB: 10/06/18
Mother: Gypsy
Father: Taggy
Characteristics: All Gyspy’s babies look just like her and Kneely is no exception ! In fact I think she’s like a miniature clone of Gypsy, even beating her brother Knitty in likeliness ! Finally getting a girl, Gypsy seems very pleased with it and so far she seems to dote on her new little girl more than she ever had done with Knitty and Knotty. She is holding onto Kneely so much that neither the two aunts Aunty and Shary has had a chance so far to help out. Perhaps Gypsy will take Kneely with her even on long foraging trips !

See the resemblance of them to Gypsy 🙂

Kneely may not be pretty but somehow I still find her cute !

and she gets on well with brother Knitty too 🙂

and she definitely is loved by mum 🙂

and I am pretty sure that Taggy is her dad !


DOB: 16/06/18
Mother: Tabby
Father: unknown
Characteristics: Tizzy is a real ginger ( oh yes, another one again ! ) and she looks very different from her brother Toby so I suspect they have different fathers too. What makes Tizzy stands out is that she loves to squeak and tweet to get her mother’s attention. I’ve never seen any baby who does it like her yet !

Tizzy is clumsy so perhaps that’s why she always calls out her mum for help !

And everyone just wants to touch and love her !

She’s a very sweet little baby and she’s a magnet for all the spinsters and unfortunate females who have been sterilized by the authority. Everyone just wants a slice of her !

Yes, we all love you Tizzy !


DOB: 20/06/18
Mother: Stacy
Father: Unknown
Characteristics: Another ginger again ! Brother of yearling Spotty he’s another rather elusive baby to film as mum evades human contact and I really haven’t been able to catch a proper video of him yet. Hopefully mum would chill out a bit more and cut baby Scotty some slack as time goes 🙂

Mum Stacy is very protective of baby Scotty !

” Don’t worry, Mr ! Your chance will come 🙂 “


DOB: 05/09/18
Mother: Haggy
Father: unknown
Characteristics: Another ginger sometimes I find it hard to tell her from the many gingers we have this season 🙂 Fortunately she has a very light coat which stands out and that should help !
She has a face if you closely inspect very much like that of Kneely so I suspect they are half-sisters to each other.

Kneely and Nataly – Kneely is almost 3 months older !

Haggy is very experienced and she loves her kids too !

Like her brother Nony and sister Nibby before her she should do well with such a loving mother like Haggy.

She’s truly the last baby born this season and so for this season of 2018 we have a total of 13 new babies 🙂 Welcome to you all sweeties !

2017 Babies

Spocky ♂

DOB: around 05/05/2017
Mother: Dolly, the popular girl always gets it first !
Father: no doubt it’s Grandee as he had been seen tending to him on several occasions to give mum Dolly a much needed break !
Characteristics: Spocky’s eyes are enormous, they’re some of he biggest I’ve seen so far ! His ears don’t stick out like his brother Baty’s but they aren’t far behind ! He has inherited Grandee’s prominent philtrum and notched upper lip too ! All in all he’s one good looking boy and you’d see that when he even’s still crinkled and wrinkled just a few days old !

He’s a looker early in life !

Baty & Spocky – the resemblance isn’t that apparent immediately…

Spocky could almost walk right away the day I first met him, a bit unsteady nonetheless impressive at his tender age of only about 48 hours ! He was curious too and was eager to wriggle free from mum to explore this exciting new world surrounding him !

Let’s go baby !

Wow isn’t he amazing !?

Just a tumble, no big deal !

His growth spurt came in early too he was big boned at birth but boys he really did beef up quickly and became a big boy. By 6 months old he’s almost as big as Dopey and could tackle him and win 50% of the time too ! He’s almost unmatched in his agility for his lots born in 2017, Spunky came second but the gap’s huge !

He’s big boned !

and certainly fearless too !

Spocky & Spunky – Spocky comes out on top !

Stocky’s both the brain and the meat !

Dopey: ” Are you sure ? “

Dopey – never underestimate your challenger !

He’s really good for his age !

He must be special too as he’s among only a handful of babies that I saw paternal care happening ! Grandee absolutely loves him and you really could feel his adoration for his baby son ! I suspect he’s also Baty’s dad but not once did I witness that special chemistry between him and Baty !

Grandee: ” I love my son 🙂 “

He’s destined to become an alpha and it’s the first time that I could say for certain !

He’s getting there – give him a few more years !

Spunky ♀

DOB: around 08/05/2017
Mother: Sally
Father: no idea at all
Characteristics: Spunky probably has long tailed macaque blood in her as her face resembles one – eyes closer together than other babies and a longer, slender face ! She’s almost an exact equal of Spocky in the agility department and she’s just as fearless too ! She was seen climbing tress and railings as soon as her mum wasn’t holding her. A determined girl and mum Sally really had a hard time to stop her from running away ! She’s nosy too and loves to explore and for some reasons she’s always attracted to hang around Bessy despite Bossy’s disapproval ! She did learn her lesson the hard way but she always came back to irk Bossy moments later !

She’s a determined girl and always wants to run away from mum !

Didn’t I tell you she does run away !

Uh oh Spunky you’re too near Bessy again !

Bossy : ” I’ve told you not to bother Bessy, haven’t I ? “

Here we go again !

Bossy holding Spunky by her neck….

and toss her away from Bessy !

I really don’t know much about her family except her mum Sally and sister Spanky had appeared in Dopey’s video once with the latter as the main antagonist 🙂 I do think nowadays Sally is probably one of Bossy’s older daughters which makes Spunky Bossy’s granddaughter and perhaps that’s why Spunky’s fascinated with her baby aunt early on !

Dopey vs Spanky, Spunky’s lil sister 🙂

The family of Sally – they’re actually very sweet !

They must be related otherwise Bossy wouldn’t have tolerated them at such close range !

Bessy could be Spunky’s aunt !

Spunky grooming Bossy ( her grandma ? )!

Bossy grooming Spunky ( her granddaughter ? )

Spunky’s life would have been unremarkable had it not been for the obsession of aunt Dy on her – whom I think is closely related to both Bossy and Sally ( perhaps another older daughter of Bossy – no wonder Bossy is so powerful, in keeping with her status as the matriarch ! ).

Dy, the ” kidnapper ” – she’d be doing so as a very aggressive form of aunting !

Shary holding Spunky as ” captive ” !

According to the literature rhesus macaques, unlike their relative long tailed have not been reported to kidnap but with Dy ( and to a lesser extent another female called Shary ) doing it on Spunky I think we could say kidnappings do occur with rhesus too but they are very rare – at least I hadn’t seen one with the babies born in 2016 at all ! ( Aggy was really only trying to aunt Dopey in my opinion ! )

Is Aggy really another kidnapper ?

Nevertheless Dy’s kidnappings have so far been pretty tame – they were more like long sessions of grooming Spunky against her will 🙂 Had it happened with other less strong-willed babies we probably would have thought nothing of it at all ! With Spunky always struggling to wriggle free from Dy’s grab things sometimes could go horribly wrong !

Dy holding Spunky captive !

Was it an accident ?

Fortunately these ordeals for Spunky went as suddenly and mysteriously as they first appeared. Dy’s craving was really short-lived and her obsession on Spunky only lasted about a month or so. She hasn’t bothered Spunky since !

Spunky at 1 year old now ! She will hang around mum for life !

Charly ♂

DOB: around 08/05/2017
Mother: Lucy, Lizzy’s oldest daughter
Father: unknown
Characteristics: Charly has the darkest coat of all the babies born in 2017, just like his uncle Mickey. It seems all babies from the Lizzy clan have really dark coat ! If you look closely Charly really takes after his mum and he’s really another cute-looking baby to be honest.

He has a very dark coat doesn’t he ?

That’s his mum Lucy – see the resemblance ?

Too bad he’s actually very shy and the fact he’s almost always found glued to mum’s breasts ( until he’s almost a year old ) means there hasn’t been much footage of him doing adorable things like baby-walk or exploring his surroundings and the very few I have are invariably of him crying or demanding to be breastfed no matter he had only been seen to be momentarily off the milk bar seconds ago ! By no means though he’s been pulled back in his development he must have been playing and learning just as hard behind the scene as his development seems to have been just as normal as the other babies, at least physically 🙂

Too bad he’s a mama’s boy 🙂

He’s seen either well tuck up and sleeping…

or dreaming…

and he seldom wanders away from mum…

even when he’s almost a year old….

but he must be doing something too….

Charly: ” Mr. you only see a fraction of my life every week … with all due respect ! “

Oi, be a bit more respectful will you ?

Unlike other babies who mingle with others his best pal seems to be his uncle Mickey and lately if he’s not suckling he’s seen wrestling with Mickey. And he’s grown big, just like his uncle !

His uncle Mickey, now a big boy !

I love a good game with my nephew Charly !

Wow, Charly looks a bit like Richard Gere nowadays !

The Lizzy clan churns out boys who are big but a bit dim so far ….

Milly ♀

DOB: around 20/07/2017
Mother: Lizzy
Father: unknown
Characteristics: Milly inherits a similar darker coat like Charly’s and others’ in Lizzy’s clan. She never really wanders far away from mum at all and the only few times I’ve seen her I could only say for certain that’s Milly, Lizzy’s newest daughter by virtue of her association with mum. She looks a bit like Sally her big sister and I have yet to tell what her character is like – but one thing I’m sure is she loves Lizzy’s milk bar and at the time of writing she’s still nursing like a newborn.

My first impression of Milly – she’s cute isn’t she ?

She looks a bit like Charly and Sally too !

and she’s never far away from mum Lizzy…

but grow she does…

and she looks like a lighter version of her brother Mickey nowadays !

Milly ( L ) and her nephew Charly ( R )

The Lizzy clan is a close-knitted family and they keep to themselves – the only one member from them that we know any better is Mickey and that’s because he was more extrovert and enjoyed being Dopey’s sidekick when he was still a baby 🙂

Those days – Dopey & Mickey were best pals !

Don’t you hate they all grow up ?

Bessy ♀

: 23/05/2017
Mother: Bossy
Father: Cocky
Characteristics: Bessy is Bossy Jr. reincarnated without her flair for mischief and fondness for twigs 🙂 And yes she doesn’t have the weird y-shaped crown parting of her hair nor the long face either – in other words Bessy is actually prettier than her deceased sister but yet we want to see Bossy Jr. in Bessy because we all sorely miss her. It’s kind of unfair to Bessy as we seem to ignore who she actually is, not a substitute….

No Bessy doesn’t have that y-shaped parting of her hair…

nor her sister’s longer face….

she certainly doesn’t seem to like to carry a twig in her hands all the times…

and she certainly isn’t as feisty….

Coz’ she is Bessy, not a substitute of Bessy Jr. !

Had Bossy Jr still been around she’d have loved her baby sister dearly and would have taught her one or two of her tricks 🙂 – I bet the two would really click. Sadly the early demise of Bossy Jr. had left such a sense of insecurity in Bossy’s heart she seemed to have changed in her approach to baby care. Gone was the free rein she had given to Bossy Jr. and in place was an iron grip – and literally so as she would grab her either by her tail, hand or foot at all times and never let her out of her sight 🙁 It seems she wouldn’t let her wander for a feet lest she ‘d disappear !

Bossy kept to herself in the early days when Bessy was born…

Bossy wouldn’t let her guard down…

And kept Bessy close to her at all times…

And she kept a tight grip on her  !

Bessy surely meant everything to her then…

Holding Bessy with her foot...

Holding Bessy by her hand…

Bossy did lose out on a lot of the fun….

While most of her peers could explore freely by 2-3 months old Bessy was still held captive by her mum so much so Bessy’s developmental milestones were seemed to be delayed too ! Bossy didn’t even allow her older siblings to approach her let alone any other outsiders ! Babies who wandered close by would be reprimanded by Bossy right away – a smack and sometimes a toss, quite forcefully too ! Spunky did learn it the hard way but undeterred she kept on coming back until Bossy finally relented a bit 🙂 Kudos to Spunky and true to her name for her indomitable fearlessness ! Still she was awkward with her peers and didn’t really know what she was supposed to do when Bossy finally cut her some slack !

Spunky trying to break down the wall….

Even facing the wrath of Bossy !

Finally she got a bit more leeway…

By then she’d found hanging around with mum to be more preferable…

and it certainly seemed more comfortable too !

But she did eventually find her place and learn the necessary etiquettes quickly. It’s also about the same time when Bossy finally reverted back to her former self with a more conventional approach to baby care. I suspect that Bessy becoming a brat and a cry baby who couldn’t keep away from Bossy’s teats did play a large part and here also came Dy who seemed to have played a pivotal role in curbing Bessy’s bratty behaviour by ” kidnapping ” her and keeping her away from Bossy. Bossy certainly appreciated such breaks and was not in too much of a hurry to claim her baby back !

Thanks for dropping by – Dy’s the Brat Squad !

A rude awakening for Bessy that Bossy might not answer to her at all….

and Dy wasn’t uncaring….

and in time she got used to be “aunted”…

Bessy has come a long way to become who she is now. She’s not mischievous and feisty like Bossy Jr. but she is just as courageous and independent and certainly lives up to Bossy’s expectation to become an heir to the matriarch throne !

It’s time to grow up….

making new friends and allies ( here with Vivy ! )….

to prepare oneself as the rightful heir to the throne…

Larry ♂

DOB: 26/05/2017
Mother: Lancy
Father: unknown
Characteristics: Larry has a bright auburn coat just like Spocky’s and the two have very similar facial features so much so I have often suspected that they might have the same father i.e. Grandee but not once had I observed the same attentions that Grandee has yet to showered Larry with like he had done with Spocky so perhaps they aren’t half-brothers.

Larry with mum Lancy 🙂

Larry is inquisitive by nature and I still remember vividly how he wanted to squirm free from mum to come to look at my camera on several occasions- but Lancy just simply wouldn’t allow it and as soon as he even had made the slightest move she would go grab him and run. She seems to be over-protective and I wonder whether it’d be due to the loss of her girl Lanly last year….

Lancy: ” You’d look but don’t go on your own ! “

Lancy: ” You’d touch but don’t do anything else ! “

Larry: ” There’s not much I’m allowed to do ! “

On rare occasions Larry’s allowed some freedom….

But things seem to have got better lately and Larry is seen often playing with other babies in the trees ! As I only get to see Lancy and her family fleetingly each time I visit and sometimes not at all Larry’d remain one of the lesser known babies to me 🙁

Finally he’s given full rein now he’s one year old !

Spotty ♀

DOB: 12/06/2017
Mother: Stacey
Father: unknown
Characteristics: Spotty is easy to recognise – she has that prominent bald spot on her forehead the day she was born and thankfully that spot has stayed with her ever since. It might have filled up with a bit more hair now but for some reason that circular tuft of hair has a lighter colour and that really makes her stand out !

With mum Stacey – Spotty must have inherited that bald spot from her dad 🙂

From certain angle the bald spot isn’t as obvious….

But it’s there 🙂

Stacey seems to be very confident with Spotty and let her run amok as soon as she’s steady with her legs ! I’d have thought being her first born she’d be more careful with her baby ! Anyway I don’t see much of her because she’s a truly wild girl and she’s always out playing or exploring on her own as mum is often seen by herself alone ! A testament to her adventurous nature was how early she sported scrapes on her forehead – she must have had quite a few tumbles out playing even at that tender age of only a month or so !

She’s already very curious from an early age…

She’s so damn cute with those scrapes on her forehead 🙂

But a naughty girl still wants mum’s grooming ! ( the baby on the right is Charly )

She’s best friend with Vivy and the two are often seen playing together ! Another tomboy Vivy and Spotty are made to be friends for life I think !

With best pal Vivy 🙂

The two are often seen together !

Yeah that spot has got filled up but it still stands out !

Toby ♂

DOB: 24/06/2017
Mother: Tabby
Father: unknown
Characteristics: Toby is one of the cutest babies born in 2017. His big round eyes and round face seem to stay with him even when he’s nearly a year old now !  He’s also very well behaved too and not once had I seen anything bratty from him at all ! He doesn’t pester mum for extra nursing session and seemed to have weaned very well. Kudos to Tabby who’s also first time mum too !

Doesn’t Toby looks angelic ?

He loves his mum, Tabby….

and he’s well behaved from a very early age…

and certainly Tabby has also taught him well !

He’s certainly popular

His mum Tabby is probably related to Gypsy – in fact I suspect she’s Gypsy’s oldest daughter as she seems to be taking a lot of interest in grooming Gypsy and keeping an eye on Knitty too ! It may also explain why Toby loves to hang around with Knitty, his baby uncle ! He certainly loves to play with Knitty and he seems to be a good influence on his uncle too – trying all the time to distract Knitty from getting to nurse and helping to save Knitty’s hair in the process !

Toby with mum Tabby – see the resemblance between Tabby & Gypsy ?

I could see a family connection there !

Tabby certainly cares for both Gypsy & Knitty !

Knotty & Toby – uncle & nephew there ?

Knotty could learn some good behaviour from Toby for sure !

I wish I could see him more often but he is meek and hides in the trees when he sees humans, a bit like Knotty his older uncle !

Toby is nearly one year old now and a bit less shy too !

Nibby ♀

DOB: 28/07/2017
Mother: Haggy
Father: unknown
Characteristics: Nibby like his brother Nony has all inherited mum’s sad eyebrows 🙁 and in all likelihood her prominent high forehead too  though it’s a bit too early to tell !  Big eyes, small face she actually turns out to be the best looking girl, prettier than Vivy and Bessy. I have high hope for her if there’s ever a Miss Monkey Hill contest !

On the day I first met her !

I know she’s cute already 🙂

Her sad eyebrows aren’t as apparent as her brother Nony’s though !

Her brother Nony….

but there’s a hint of those eyebrows here…

Even though mum Haggy has a big family with quite a few grown-up daughters she never seems to be comfortable with the idea of delegating the job of looking after Nibby to them. She is very much a hands-on mum and you’d see how well Nibby has turned out to be.

Haggy does share food with Nibby….

and Nibby’s quite confident from an early age…

Nibby doesn’t mingle as much like Vivy or Bessy with other girls in her year but she certainly is not socially awkward. I think just like the Lizzy and Lancy clans Haggy just likes to keep to themselves too and that must be something Nibby has also learnt.

The Haggy clan also likes to keep to themselves…

Poor Nibby had the most horrible accident of the lot – just before she turned 7 months old she must have caught her arm on a barded wire or a very sharp tree branch in a fall and almost torn away completely the skin on her left arm in the process ! Poor girl didn’t wail nor made a fuss of it ! She’s just so stoic about it ! A testament to their resilience her big gaping wound healed almost completely within 10 days and if I hadn’t told you you wouldn’t even have noticed a scar there !

Poor girl, look at that avulsed skin flap 🙁

Mum Haggy knows the benefit of antimicrobials like defensins and lysozyme in their own saliva…

Libby is amazing !

Look at her left arm – almost scarless ! She’s still a looker !

Knitty ♂

: 23/07/2017
Mother: Gypsy
Father: The Interloper
Characteristics: If monkeys could ever self-propagate by cutting a bit of themselves off and plant it like we could do with cacti I ‘m sure what we end up wouldn’t even come close like an exact replica here that we have with Gypsy and Knitty – my first thought as I laid my eyes on that lil wrinkled thing was : ” Has Gypsy been time travelling – she’s holding her baby-self there ! ”

Yeap, that’s Knitty age @ 24-48 hrs !

You know instantly that he’s Gypsy’s son ! No doubt about it 🙂

It came a bit of a surprise as his father the infamous Interloper  ( yeah that one who swaggered in one day and stole Reddy’s heart last year ) didn’t look like he carries genes that would smothered in silence ! Gypsy must have super strong genes that trump everything !

Gypsy’s travelled back in time !

He looks more like Gypsy than Knotty does !

but he bears no resemblance to his dad the infamous Mr. Interloper at all !

who had a fling with the gullible Reddy in 2017 as well !

But appearance could be deceptive so we’ve learnt. Knitty might not have inherited his father’s striking features ( don’t discount the sudden surge of male hormone yet as we all know what puberty could do to a boy’s appearance ) he has at least his strong-will and boldness. I had thought that we would be witnessing history of his brother Knotty replaying itself again but no it didn’t happen – Knitty is no timid little boy he demands and would never give up until his wish is granted – and in this case unrestricted access to Gypsy’s milk bar and attentions and oddly enough he has succeeded so far 80% of the times ( and I suspect that the better food provision in 2017 also played a part in her apparent change of heart ). Gypsy has found her match and Knitty has so far rewritten the script in Gypsy’s book  – let’s hope it’s permanent for I can’t stomach another Knotty story ever again !

Gyspy could only put up with a baby’s incessant demand for milk for 1 month only…

after which she’d begin to restrict access and …

dump the baby with Aunty plus others to do her job…

It must have come as a shock to Knitty initially…

and he began to cry his heart out for….

mum, mum where are you ?

This is Aunty, she’s Gyspy’s official babysitter…

She’s one of the kindest and most helpful aunts around…

but unlike Knotty Knitty wouldn’t stop crying until mum comes back…

and eventually Gypsy’s learnt she can’t just dump Knitty like she’d with Knotty…

He’s definitely bolder and a lot more strong-willed than Knotty…

Knitty’d have his way with Gypsy… can’t remember seeing it with Knotty at all !

Knitty has more or less a more normal childhood as a result….

He and Knotty often play together….

and he’s known his baby cousin Toby very early on…

From left to right, Toby, Knitty and Knotty 🙂 They play together often too !

But everything comes with a price – Knitty has to repay her milk with his hair. It’s kind of funny to gauge Knitty’s milk intake and frequency by how big and new he sports his bald patches on his scalp 🙂 Gypsy’s the only monkey with trichotillomania that I know  of and her pica for hair means her stomach must be able to digest trichobezoar or else she would have been dead from gastric outlet obstruction years ago !

but everything comes with a price….

Knitty might not be a pretty boy but I have found myself drawn to him more and more. The Gypsy boys are all special in their own way 🙂

Soon Knitty will be 1 year old and by the look of it there ‘ll be another sibling coming too !

Let’s hope Gypsy has changed forever….

Vivy ♀

DOB: 23/07/2017
Father: Grandee
Characteristics: Vivy has really strong facial features and her eyes are dark and piercing too ! She has inherited her mother’s prominent eyebrows and Grandee’s deep philtrum and notched upper lip too. She’s a unique look to her but she’s still a looker !

The day I first met Vivy – she and Knitty were born within hours of each other…

but her strong facial features ‘re apparent early on…

Mum Ridgy is probably high ranking too… but I hadn’t noticed her until Vivy was born 🙁

Those eyes and eye brows !

She’s since caught my attention right away !

You’d see she has a unique look to her 🙂

She’s born about the same time as Knitty and as such she seems to have a special bond with Knitty and she’s often seen trying to comfort him when he’s upset that mum’s milk bar isn’t open to him again ( but of course he always manages to get it open for him eventually, time after time ! )

Vivy is a really good caring girl !

and she really cares about Knitty !

I hadn’t realised she’s also Grandee’s daughter until I saw him shower her with the same love and attention like he did with Spocky on at least two occasions – I have since drawn this logical conclusion that Grandee knows who his kids are and he ‘d seek them out to help with the chores – like babysitting to give their mum a well earned break !

Grandee with her lil girl 🙂

He’s such a good dad to all his kids !

Now you’d see her resemblance to both mum Ridgy and dad Grandee !

She must have inherited the same good genes from Grandee just like Spocky had – she’s as advanced as Spocky and no less as at home with trees and other acrobatic feats !  Extrovert like Spocky she has many playmates – in fact all girls in her year look up to her, including Bessy too !

With Spotty ….

and Bessy ( right )…

but actually all the girls are getting along well with one another !

She’s a very likeable girl and I bet she would be a good sister too ! We’ll find out as mum Ridgy is expecting soon !

I have confidence in her – all Grandee’s kids are decent !

FAQ about our monkeys

I am now putting up a few facts for your information on the monkeys in Hong Kong.

• What do the monkeys in Hong Kong rely on for food ?

Most of the monkeys in Monkey Hill are probably descendants of native Macacas ( probably a subspecies of mulatta, first reported by the British colonists in the 19th century but had never been properly studied ) and introduced Macaca mulatta ( rhesus macaques ) officially from India and to a lesser extent Macaca fasicularis ( long-tailed macaques ) from Southeast Asia released privately. As such most of them are herbivorous though some of them may take the occasional insect and eggs, especially the long-tailed ones or hybrids of them. Fortunately these macaques from Southeast Asia are a minority for they are truly invasive and could wreak havoc with the native fauna – particularly avian species or else we won’t be hearing many pleasant chirps and calls of birds inside the country park that add to our enjoyment 🙂

There are not many species of edible leaves and fruits in the forest – may be a dozen of them, a published paper ( Fellowes, J.R., 1992. HK macaques: final report to the WWF HK projects committee. WWF, HK ) – could only consistently identified seeds of 12 plant species in faecal samples of macaques – Melodinus suaveolens, Schefflera heptaphylla, Garcinia oblongifolia, Elaeagnus tutcheri, Elaeocarpus sylvestris, Sapium discolor, Melastoma sanguineum, Ficus spp., Rhodomyrtus tomentosa , Mussaenda pubescens, Psychotria asiatica, Psychotria serpens.

Even the most powerful alpha male Skull Head is reduced to a bag of bones in winter 🙁

Only a few of them bear fruits all year round and they cannot support the entire population of wild monkeys attracted to live there over the years. The macaques at best could only have a modest bonanza in the fruiting seasons in summer and autumn annually. At other times they have to make do with leaves of which there are more choices and most of them are of really meagre nutritional value. ( Wong, C.,L., 1994. Studies on the feral macaques of HK. Unpublished Thesis. HKUST, HK )

And as my constant viewers have noticed they also put on a ” cheetos ” look in the lean winter months as they have to scrape by on the nectar of camellia oleifera as well 🙁

• How do they interact with humans ?

Despite our difference in size and the fact that most of us do not have a red face rhesus macaques do regard humans as conspecifics ( i.e. members of the same species ) and apply their system of facial signal communication to us. The problem is we don’t and few of us do have a clue. For instance we often misinterpret their grin with teeth ( silent bared teeth ) as a sign of aggression but in actual fact it means they are scared and is telling us to drop whatever we are doing to aggravate them. Most visitors however react by wielding their hiking stick to ward them off and in doing so the act sends them into a state of confusion as in their society a signal normally and usually will be reciprocated by an appropriate action – they often just retreat back into the thick undergrowth ( probably thinking we are too thick to understand ) in such an encounter but a rare few may become angry and show their anger and frustration with the ” open mouth stare ” – which may be silent or accompanied by a few harsh cackles to say they are truly pissed off and may even attack !

This is the submissive ” bared teeth ” expression !

Another common mistake is to glance them in the eyes and smile like we do in greeting each other. In their society there is no ” smile of greeting ” but only a smile of retreat as we bare our teeth briefly ( remember that grin with teeth is adopted by the submissive party as described above ) but the act of staring in the eyes, however brief is a contradictory act of aggression and so in the confusion a rhesus may act less friendly than expected !

This is another bared teeth grin though it may appear threatening to some 🙁

Normally for people who can’t be bothered to learn any of these etiquettes beforehand keeping a respectful distance ( at least two meters in my experience ) alone would usually be sufficient to stay out of trouble and most rhesus seldom make a fuss about our presence unless you decide to provoke them by starring into their eyes or make a sudden movement or a loud noise. Even then most rhesus are peaceable ( especially we are so much bigger in size ) and would just run away or do what they do in their society to appease an aggressive party – turning their head/body away or presenting their buttocks – the so-called rump-presenting 🙂

Never be as clueless as Dopey when you see rump-presenting !

Even if they do seem threatening ( recognised by their silent ” open mouth stare ” ) as a result of our untoward actions the last thing you want to do in my experience is backing off for this sends a wrong signal to them that they are the alpha and some of them would overcome their natural fear of our bigger size and charge at us with intent to show their dominance – a shove, a scratch or even a bite – hold your ground and take a step forward and they would normally just scurry away instead.

Things however get a bit trickier with food.

Most bachelor males are undernourished …
Even those belonging to a troop only do marginally better like this alpha from the defaced matriarch troop.

Most macaques are hungry all the time as there are seldom enough food for all of them in nature ( I really think all the forests in Hong Kong together could support only a few hundred monkeys ) and even so they do not “ attack “ unless provoked – and if ignorant visitors approach them like some petting animals with food or hikers inadvertently wander into them with items suggestive of food that’s when most incidents of grab and run happen – food is a strong incentive for them to overcome their fear of us – and in the process one might sustain at most a scratch and rarely a fall from a surprise ambush, nothing really serious and I have yet to hear a first case of Colles fracture as a result of a fall or zoonotic disease ( including the much dreaded cercopithecine herpes I aka herpes B virus  ) contacted from such an encounter if it had ever happened ! Anyway, it’s not an attack per se, I only see human tempting them there, knowingly or not.

It is actually very difficult to contact the deadly Herpes B virus in the wild. All 50 reported cases happened in a lab setting so far ! One is more likely to die from complications of a flu statistically speaking instead !

More serious physical contact usually happens when you are deemed as a danger to their young and if bluffing with a open mouth stare and a few harsh cackles doesn’t send the offender away you could get a shove, a scratch and rarely a bite if they don’t retreat first. To be fair such instances are again of a defence nature but I suppose it makes better headlines on a newsless day.

Mother of Lil Devil is very protective. Indeed all mothers are of their young ! Notice the open mouth stare here.

As Golden Hill Country park is very popular due to its close proximity and its reputation as the de facto ” Monkey Hill ” opportunities for things to go wrong between humans and their primate kin occur more frequently there or just outside it if the latter chooses to forage beyond the country park limit and wander into urban areas and villages.

Those people feeding them for fun with improper food and without much prior research are the cause of all these bad publicity when the animals turn out to behave less cute that they had imagined. Of the 756 documented human-macaque interactions over a 128 hr period with these casual feeders and visitors only one scratch was observed and the fault fell squarely on the human party – for kicking a monkey. ( Cheng, W.W., 2014. A review of the management of feral macaques in HK. Published thesis. HKU )

If we do some research beforehand and keep our distance it actually is very good fun to observe them in the wild.

• So what about the feeding ban ?

Feeding is banned within this area but in reality is almost unenforceable as there aren’t enough personnel on the ground. People come to feed especially in the main visitor car park but still one rarely sees any obese monkeys like those in Siam Reap !

Feeding monkeys is banned since 1999 with a fixed fine of 1,300 USD per offence. Meanwhile the authority had been reported in the past to have planted about 200,000 fruit trees ( mostly wild berries etc ) since 2001 across the park that hopefully would provide enough food for the monkeys living in or around Monkey Hill – the catch is however nobody knows how many of those seedlings survive to become trees or shrubs able to bear fruit and even if they do, the fruiting season lies mostly between May to October which means for large part of the year monkeys have no other option except to resort to begging and foraging along the road with some bolder ones even choosing to wander into nearby urban areas.

Venturing out is not an option for maimed ones like Stumpy here 🙁

The feeding ban is supposed to encourage monkeys to go back to foraging but if there isn’t enough provision in nature they have to go somewhere where food seems to be more readily available – residential blocks and rural villages ( very few nowadays as farming is almost extinct in HK, the few left are smallholders far away from Golden Hill ) in the vicinity of the country park. In fact since the ban reported macaque nuisance cases had steadily increased and shot up to a historic high of nearly 1400 incidents in 2006 and only came down with the introduction of a contraceptive program that began in 2008 which was subsequently called off in 2013 as it was too successful in curbing the growth of the monkey population. ( figures from AFCD ( Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department ) of HK between the year 2004 to 2013 )

Reddy with Dopey here – See how thin Reddy is in her summer coat 🙁

In my opinion a fed monkey does not bother. And a colony of monkey in a relatively small area is better than having them dispersed over a wider area because they have to forage. If the contraception measure is so successful and that the feeding ban is not helpful and it takes probably around 10-12 tonnes of food on a MONTHLY basis to sustain the population, ( 3.5 tonnes in 1990s for a population of 569 monkeys according to the study by Wong in 1994, current population is about 1,700 coming down from close to 2,000 in 2010 ) a tiny fraction of food averaging 3,500 tonnes Hongkongers wasted on a DAILY basis.

The matriarch Bossy doesn’t fare any better…

It probably makes more sense to have some form of managed feeding in place until the population has plummeted to such an extent that foraging alone is enough to satisfy their need.

• What is your position on feeding ?

I don’t agree with casual feeding and I disapprove of feeding them junk food. Feeding should be done by those who are equipped with the right knowledge and attitude and know when to stop so as not to discourage them from foraging in the wild. Most of the problem stems from people feeding them junk food for fun and once they acquire a taste for the sweet high caloric food with low nutritional value it’s very difficult to get them back on a natural diet. Besides they do make a mess with all those wrappers left behind.

If you want to feed them properly, take wholesome natural food like the Japanese authority does in Jigokudani (“Hell’s Valley”) with a combination of sweet potatoes and soybeans. They leave very little residues behind and any leftover would be readily taken by birds and other animals. The most appropriate months to help them out with food is between the months of October to March so as not to discourage them from foraging in the wild.

But now the monkeys are caught between a rock and a hard place – there isn’t enough food naturally nor is there enough feeding they are so accustomed to.

A drifter mother with a baby to raise usually does badly….

There are officially a dozen registered monkey feeders – these are individuals mostly senior citizens who have been befriending and feeding the monkeys for years, some nearly for a few decades and are exempt form the fine. Their licence is neither renewable nor transferrable which means that their numbers would dwindle with time. Ultimately the authority hopes that there would be no feeders left, registered or unregistered.

as are individuals who’re old and infirm. Sterilisation prolongs their life in the wild and more females will become like Nellie here…

Meanwhile the authority has sterilised close to 70 % of monkeys between 2008 and 2014 ( around 500 males have received chemical vasectomy while close to 1,100 females have either Spay-Vac or laparoscopic tubectomy ) and had succeeded in bringing the population down by 15 %. Nowadays juveniles account for less than 30 % of the population there and with infant mortality rate so high in the wild the population will continue to dwindle in the long run.

In fact the sterilisation is so extensive and indiscriminate a few troops are already on the brink of extinction from a combination of chronic malnutrition and in the near future from inbreeding.

Poor Valorie from the defaced matriarch’s troop succumbed to leontiasis ossea , probably from calcium insufficiecy 🙁

I hope the current policy is the result of some crazy overzealous bureaucrats who have eyes only for figures but my observation over the years I call HK home could only lead me to believe that everything the current unrepresented and undemocratic administration of HK does always has a hidden agenda behind. The administration doesn’t mind to manipulate figures to achieve its aims. Nature always become a casualty and a case in point is the near-wiping out of a unique colony of white dolphins living off the waters of Lantau island in HK. Land is at a premium and those closest to established urban area but currently off limits to developers due to various reasons will fetch the highest price. Monkeys and many wild animals have no say in it.

To recap :

• There are about 2,000 wild monkeys in HK.

• About 1,700 of them reside in Monkey Hill.

• They have to consume about 12 tons of food supplement monthly to sustain the population.

• Most of them, about 70% are sterile.

• Their population is decreasing as a result of human interventions.

• There are 7 million people in HK and increasing as 150 immigrants from China are allowed to settle in HK without screening every day for at least the last two decades.

• The government has to find enough landfill sites for the 3,500 tons of food Hongkongers wasted per day.

• As well as to find land to house these extra new Hongkongers and their dependents, which number close to a million since 1997 alone, excluding those who were granted residency under various schemes.

So who’s the more invasive and wasteful species on earth ?

Where do we stand ?

How many babies will Grandee sire this year ?

It will soon be the time of the year again with new members arriving in droves in Monkey Hill.

Last year we had a boom of baby girls 🙂

Indeed the first baby will probably arrive in less than 4 weeks’ time but the baby boom won’t start until a month or so later between June and July.

Baty born in May 2016

My bet again this year is that Dolly will pop the first baby and I’m pretty sure that it will look like either Baty and Spocky again with those big bat ears !

Spocky, brother of Baty born in May 2017. Yes, they both have big prominent ears 🙂

All rhesus macaques are promiscuous and one would assume that a male which plays no part in the upbringing of his offspring would probably has minimum bonding with his babies – but I was pleasantly surprised to find one exception and that is Grandee, one of the co-dominant alphas in our gang who took time to care for his babies born last year – Spocky and Vivy on several occasions. He’s probably better than some human dads and put them to shame !

Grandee with son Spocky
Grandee with daughter Vivy

Grandee is just one exceptional alpha male !

It’s always difficult to know who a baby’s father is – except those of Grandee. This year I’m preety sure though that Taggy, one of the lesser alpha males is the father to Gypsy’s baby if she’s indeed pregnant ! For the others I think we’ll never know 🙂

Got caught together Gypsy & Taggy on several occasions 🙂

My Channel on Youtube

Just a few words about my channel….

Most of my videos of monkeys of Monkey Hill in the early years were casually shot – I didn’t follow any particular individuals nor did I try to recognise any of them, I just filmed whatever came to me on my hikes. The only exception was Stumpy as he was what started me to take videos of monkeys more consistently and he has been my interest on and off since the fall of 2011 when I met him for the very first time.

The Story of Stumpy

I’ve never been a regular contributor on Youtube until I started to follow Baty and other babies in June 2016. It just happened on the spur of the moment as a thought came to me that maybe it’d be possible to follow a baby or two ( and the list subsequently grew but thank god the monkeys in Monkey Hill were never as prolific or I’d have to go full-time ). The fact is there were at least a few long lulls in my output – I was away for a whole year in 2012 and wasn’t back in HK until March 2013 and that year I only went back on a few occasions to make sure Stumpy was well. 2014 I was into rock climbing and I only visited Monkey Hill rarely. June 2015 saw my return to hiking past that area and I began to publish at a more regular interval – a mishmash of some old clips as well as more contemporary ones then.

This baby with otapostasis has gotten me into this mess >:(

As I could only have Wednesday night and Sunday each week to spend time on my footage my output is rather small and slow compared to many others and if I happen to visit the place twice a week in a row for several weeks then I become really behind with my schedule. At present it’s 8 weeks behind I’m afraid 🙁

As I work through my footage I begin to get a clearer picture of their society, how they interact and relate. Sometimes I’d connect the dots together with clues from footage I shot a good few years earlier and offer a possible explanation. Most of my knowledge of each individual is really a work of intelligent guess based on my observation but as I only see a tiny fraction of their life each week I may err and it has already happened quite a few times 🙁

Like the once infamous Baby-Snatcher – she’s turned out to be a loving mum 🙂
And Bossy Jr is actually a girl o_O’

I can’t control what comes to me nor do I want to engineer a situation to spice and sex things up. I treat my videos as a faithful representation of what happen on my hikes, they are like a hiking-logue to me in essence.

Hong Kong is blessed to have such a vast countryside as part of the city. It’s teeming with wildlife and for most Hongkongers nature is no more than a stone’s throw away. You’d have thought that they should have a better knowledge of their home turf but in actual fact few express any interest outside of work and for many of them the countryside is just a place to have fun – sometimes at the expense of the wildlife there 🙁

The cast

The Cast

The story starts with monkeys or else there won’t be a place called Monkey Hill in HK.

There are about 2,000 wild monkeys in HK of which about 1,700 call Monkey Hill their home nowadays.

There are about 30 different troops and the four most powerful of them all vie for the control of Golden Hill ( aka Kam Sham ) Road and the main visitor carpark area.

The four major players are known as Skull Head, Biggie, Thickie and Cleftie, of these I only really know Skull Head’s troop a bit better as his troop is often unavoidable on Golden Hill Road, the rest I got my information from the locals. Their abode is not fixed and they do roam in the mountains, sometimes to more remote places as well !

Where the four major troops are likely to be seen

Monkeys have been seen playing here before ! That’s a good 8 km from monkey hill !

Skull Head’s Troop

This troop is the most powerful of all the troops there and is between 400 to 600 strong with members drawn from Mr Seven’s original troop as well as defectors from the other three main troops. I have to admit I could count probably about a 100 of them each time I see Skull Head loitering around, the rest probably would appear from hiding in the trees I guess if someone dumps a truck load of goodies on the road.

I used to think this was Mr Seven until a local told me he hadn’t been seen for years, presumeably dead. Anyway that’s what a loser looks like 🙁

This troop has at least 10 lesser ɑ males who do Skull Head’s bidding. I really don’t see him fight often but he is one with such an imposing statue that all others will quietly back off when they see him.

He is about 12 years old now and has sired many offspring. The highest ranking females in his troop are his wives ( I believe there are two and they are twins ! ) and an older female with ectrodactyly who could be a senior female defected from Cleftie’s troop.

Whenever you see a member of his troop along Golden Hill Road you know it would be difficult to see any other troops as they would all go into hiding.

Biggie’s Troop

I’ve never seen this troop properly which numbers about a hundred but I’m sure I must have stumbled upon its members unknowingly. Before Skull Head’s arrival to the scene this troop boast the beefiest α male hence its name. Apparently since Skull Head’s ascension this particular troop has retreated to the woods in the nearby Jubilee Reservoir ( Shing Mun ) area. They do wander back to Golden Hill Road to feed from time to time though.

Thickie’s Troop

It’s so named because it is headed by a rather friendly male who would let feeders pet him. Because of his mild temperament people think he’s rather thick. He apparently has lost his territory to Skull Head and has been pushed to operate mainly in Eagle’s Nest Hill area east of Golden Hill Country Park and his troop is known to wander downhill into nearby residential blocks in Tai Wai to raid for food unfortunately 🙁

His troop nowadays give his folks a bad name….

Monkeys raiding apartment blocks in Tai Wai

Cleftie’s Troop

A dominant hereditary trait runs in the matrilineal line in this troop as all succeeding matriarchs have been noticed to have cleft hands ( echodactyly ) hence my nickname for this troop. They too have been pushed out by Skull Heads’s troop but they are luckier for they still retain control of the visitor car park area by Tai Po Road and I have to say they seem to be doing rather well there.

I think these females are related to this troop:)

The beautiful blond by the bus stop also belongs to this troop and as she has normal hands she can’t be very high-ranking in the troop !

She also belongs to Cleftie’s Troop 🙂

Other Lesser Cast

The rest are distributed into twenty odd smaller troops which number between a few ( yes , just a few !) to a few dozens.

The Ragtag Troop

This has to be the most pathetic group which originally counted on two individuals only – an overbearing matriarch and a rather lazy and beefy male known as Batman ( for his pointy high-set ears). They do have a few drifters who come to join them from time to time without much loyalty and certainly they don’t seem to be too willing to defend their leaders from other troops. Since last year this troop has taken Stumpy into its core leadership but he’s not actually very welcome for he’s probably related to the matriarch herself. Risk of inbreeding probably means Stumpy will eventually be ousted one day but as things go he’s still hanging around and to prove his worth he’a actually the one who does most of the fighting to defend their territory, however brief.

Because this troop isn’t a threat at all to anyone Skull Head’s troop seems to tolerate their hanging around and it’s quite amazing how sometimes one’d find the troika ( the matriarch, Batman and Stumpy ) along with a few haggard females waiting in the distance up the slope with Skull Head’s massive troop taking the road.

The drifter mum Lubby with her baby son Dubby seems to have now settled in with the Ragtag troop though I wish they hadn’t….

The Defaced Matriarch ( Löwina ) ’s troop

This was once a rather big troop and quite powerful too but they had been decimated by a combination of bad luck and indiscriminate human intervention.

Thinking about it I remember I used to run into them on my hiking trips there in the early days before I got interested into monkeys. Then came the animal abuse on the monkeys in 2011 when the once beautiful young strapping matriarch was attacked and became defaced in the incident. She and her troop seemed to have borne a big brunt from the abuses and has been weakened ever since. But then came the government sterilisation program and they seemed to have been targeted unfairly that left most of its females sterile and the final straw came when their head ɑ male was also nipped subsequently a year or so later. The defaced matriarch is one of the few odd females that are left fertile but it’s not going to reverse their fortune any more even if they are left to their own devices. The last baby born in that troop was back in 2014 I think their days are numbered.

Nowadays the defaced matriarch and her troop, about a dozen strong is so marginalised that they are only occasionally found in the grounds of the pavilion, away from most of the feeding.

A glimpse of them in this video…

The poor Valorie, a young female with leontiasis ossea who died last autumn was one of the very few fertile female left in this unfortunate troop.

Nora’s Troop

This troop normally occupies the beginning of the uphill part of Golden Hill Road near the dam. It was originally named as the ” Little Prince’s troop ” as its star is the matriarch ( Nora )’s baby son, born last May ( 2016 ) and has been called affectionately the Little Prince ( now known as Vince ) as compared to other babies born to this troop in the same period he’s obviously been doted on by everyone there, including another powerful figure, the senior female Granny.

My first encounter with this troop

There are about 30 members in this lesser troop and they are very protective of their juveniles, especially Little Prince and it’s difficult to film him without running into difficulty with the matriarch and her rather fierce troop members.

As he’s been so pampered and gotten to share more food than even other adults are allowed to he has become officially the chubbiest baby of Monkey Hill, and I bet he’s like a foul-mouthed Eric Cartman in life as well 🙂

The Little Devil’s Troop

I know even less about this troop but they do have a star as well – the rather devilish-looking baby with his fearsome matriarch mum. Their troop is usually found if at all just beyond the Pavilion at the top of Golden Hill Road. I suspect they actually wander here from the woods in Jubilee Reservoir a kilometre or so north.

My very first encounter with Lil Devil

I have yet to be certain who the α male is in this troop but their matriarchs are unmistakable as there are two and they are likely to be twins and Little Devil like his counterpart, the Little Prince is also very pampered but as they are way out from most of the feeding they do look rather undernourished most of the time.

This just tells you how vital Golden Hill Road which brings lots of visitors and goodies to the monkeys living around the area is.

Bossy’s Troop

By pure chance this is the troop I film most frequently as the thought of following a monkey baby stemmed from this troop when I first met baby Baty there last May. Led by a rather young alpha male named Cocky and an older female known as Bossy this troop and particularly its babies are often featured in my videos. Numbering around 40 to 50 member strong Bossy’s troop could bully other smaller troops and it would often sneak in to fill any vacant slot along Golden Hill Road when Skull Head’s troop isn’t looking.

Dopey could draw a crowd 🙂

To learn more of this troop and its babies , please follow this link 🙂

360° tour of Monkey Hill

Over sixty 360° photos taken over a span of 2 years and assembled painstakingly to form this immersive tour, you will be shrunken to their size and see their world the way they do. Some of the cast you probably have met them on my channels and now you’d almost see them in person. Take a break and teleport yourself to Monkey Hill in Hong Kong 🙂

In case you want to check out your bearing relative to the major landmarks of HK please watch the first 3 minutes or so of this video about our babies from 2016 !

Get to know some of our cast in this video as well !

And if you have some time to spare, don’t forget to visit another tour of mine -” Hong Kong form 0 m to 554 m a.s.l. ” as this will give you a better insight into the city our gang calls home 🙂

We need names for our characters :)

Thank you for your participation and I’m quite overwhelmed with all those names, honestly !

For those who have submitted a list of names without specific instructions I have to make a painful choice to only include those that seem more suiting 🙁

The choice is yours and the polls will decide the names for our characters when I come back next week to check their outcomes 🙂

By the way even though I have included those names that are rather long here but I plead with you not to choose them as they’ll take up a lot of valuable space in my snippets 🙁

Here’s reminder of the characters that need names 🙂

Dopey’s aunt

Which name do you like the most for this rather careless aunt of Dopey ?

Bossy’s sweet son

Which name do you think suit this rather friendly son of Bossy most ?

Knotty’s really loving sister

How about a name for this caring sister of Knotty ?

Stumpy’s matriarch aunt of Ragtag troop

How about a name for the matriarch of Ragtag troop ? Incidentally she's also Stumpy's aunt as well.

Her son now 1 year old

How about a name for her son, a baby cousin of Stumpy ?

The beauty mum

How about a name for this beautiful mother, one of the high-ranking mums in Skull Head's troop ?

and her pretty daughter 🙂

And a name for her cute little daughter ?

The matriarch – she scratches and attacks !

She's feisty and very protective, she's Lil Prince's mum, matriarch of the troop, how about a name for her ?

The grandmother who loves babies 🙂

She adores babies and always tries to help out. She's the granny to all the little ones in this troop 🙂

Don’t feed the baby monkey pet trade !

It’s not just cruelty, it’s an affront to decency. Enslaving an animal to perform against its nature is already shameful enough but this plunge it to a new low .

A nursing monkey begging for money ( picture from JAAN )

Could you imagine the stress to the mother and its infant ? This is not a rare happening, it’s not freak and it’s actually a practice to prey on our heart. It’s an insult to motherhood.

Just a click away and you’ll be aghast at the horrid images of “ Topeng Monyet “ or Dancing Monkey in Indonesia. The practice has no cultural element in it at its present form as it is nowadays a largely unregulated commercial enterprise being run by gangs who rent out to street children, heavily indebted ( hence they work for free ) to perform the monkeys at traffic intersections or along the roadsides. Any money gained for the most part will be taken away by the gang. The kids will learn nothing useful for themselves and will never be able to extricate themselves from their debt, so in a way they are just as unfortunate as their monkeys, those who enslave are themselves slaves as well.

The traditional method to force them to walk upright…. no doubt causing early arthritis to the axial skeleton and related joints not designed to handle the weight of the body this way 🙁

A grown-up monkey cannot be trained. To make a monkey stand upright and learn to perform humanly-like antics the trainer has to start with a baby monkey fresh – each one is ripped from its mother in the wild forest by the poachers and bought from the infamous animal market in Jakarta by the trainer. They are best to train between 7-8 months old for they are more or less developed with good muscles yet still pliable with their joints and ligaments. Nevertheless about half of them still perish during the training to make them walk upright, against their nature. Only successful monkeys could then be rented out but once they hit adulthood many of them will become too aggressive and uncooperative and have to be put down. Some may even end up in restaurants specializing in monkey cuisines. One way or the other their demises are ensured. As their working life is not long, the business relies on the availability of baby monkeys in the animal market to be trained constantly to replace those no longer able to perform. Thus it’s a all about supply and demand.

Monkey babies languishing in a cage waiting for a buyer …

Seeing and experiencing enough cruelties themselves day in and day out I could imagine everyone involved in Topeng Monyet will more or less be despairing at humanity themselves. Cruelty begets more cruelty, it will never lead them out of poverty.

Thanks to the work of JAAN ( Jakarta Animal Aid Network ) this practice of Topeng Monyet has now been banned in Jakarta, the capital as well as in the provincial cities of Solo and Bandung. For instance, the city government of Jakarta launched raids back in 2013 to take and buy back all monkeys ( 90 USD for each confiscated ) used as street buskers and shelter them at a 2.5-acr preserve at Jakarta’s Ragunan Zoo. This is a first step in the right direction. Topeng Monyet even if it is a cultural heritage has to be regulated and definitely not be left in the hands of gangs which think these monkeys are expendable commodity, not life.

Keeping monkeys as pets in Indonesia is not against the law and most Indonesians do know they make bad pets and are only cute for a few months – and above all it’s a 20-year commitment to say the least. Once they are no longer easy to keep and become unruly most are either abandoned or locked up in cages and never be looked upon as their dear babies ever again. As pets they are hard to sell ( hence they only sell at like 6 dollars each ) and it’s only people in the business of Topeng Monyet help keep the baby monkey trade afloat. Now that Topeng Monyet is banned I think this illegal trade won’t be able to sustain any longer.

A life like this is already cruel enough…..

But not indoor Topeng Monyet.

There are now individuals from Indonesia trying to parade their “ pet “ baby monkey on Youtube to make money. Some are even unscrupulous enough to spin sobbing tales about themselves all in the hope of bringing in unsuspecting viewers to ” aid ” them financially. One common ploy is to pretend that they have to sell their beloved pets as they are too poor to keep them any longer – but remember a monkey baby only costs about 6 dollars each in Indonesia and no one in the right frame of their mind there will buy it for more than that ( not at least a few thousand dollars in the States or other more affluent countries where the viewers come from ). After all wouldn’t it be easier that an interested local buyer get one themselves, cuter and younger and moreover not-yet-bonded with its keeper from the animal market ? If merely 6 dollars will keep the owner afloat financially I think they might as well sell the laptop or mobile that they have been using to upload their videos of their beloved “ pet “ they find hard to separate first. I’m pretty sure those gadgets will fetch them more money in ebay there.

They could be have for so cheap – it just doesn’t make sense. Life is worthless 🙁

The story just doesn’t add up if one examine logically but unfortunately there are still plenty of people fallen for it and give crooks there easy money.

If more people catch wind that they could make easy money by parading their baby monkeys on Youtube or other similar platforms I fear the market for baby macaques will ignite once again as there will be many copycats to follow the act. After all it’s a small investment ( 6 dollars for the baby and upkeep is pretty cheap at least for a baby ) that could potentially pull in money at least several hundred times over. And they are easy to get rid of once they expire in their cuteness department – remember those are indoor pets and whatever happen to them is up to its owner. No authority could have the resources nor manpower to prevent anything untoward to them. In the best scenario they may find a sanctuary where they could be released ….. but I can’t imagine what their fate is like in the hands of crooks who keep them solely for money.

Another new user name and another channel a brand new baby monkey will be paraded again every now and then for a few minutes in a video doing unnatural antics. An altogether new enterprise once again and the cycle will just continue.

There is only so much JAAN could do and it has taken them 5 years of hard work to finally bring some belated changes to the scene. They even have set up a sanctuary for these rehabilitated ex-Topeng-Monyet monkeys on an island.

But they are powerless against monkeys kept as pets.

Please don’t undo their hard work.

Don’t support any form of indoor Topeng Monyet from Indonesia.

Think twice before you part with your money.

Thank you 🙂

Dopey’s very expressive eyes

Rarely would one see a monkey baby with such expressive eyes, it’s almost like seeing a human infant in him. It fact his temper tantrum is markedly different from that of many other babies which almost always ends in just the universal open-mouth crying grimace and crawling and cowering around. He seems to use more of his eyes to show his anger, frustrations, sadness and ultimately fear. Humans are the only primates ( or indeed any animals ) to show the whites of their eyes to allow subtle emotions to be conveyed in our gaze and in Dopey I could almost see the dawning of this capability in his tantrum. Given time he and his breeds may eventually evolve just to do so, and with that the beginning of a more complex facial language. He is also one of the cleverest babies around, in a few weeks’ time there would be one episode which pits him against other babies in a crisis situation and he really shines in it. Only Knotty could match him.

There’s still crying but a lot less so than other babies. His eyes could speak !

This baby’s brain seems to be wired differently to other babies and it seems his delay in developmental milestones could also be related to this. Once his wiring was complete he has caught up with his peers in no time.

If Reddy manages to produce another baby this summer it would just be interesting to see how his sibling would compare with him. My guess is he or she will be more like an average monkey baby and Dopey is really an anomaly, truly one of a kind 🙂

The unconventional tantrum of Dopey