Devil Monkey

Large, tailed Primate of North America. Etymology: Name coined by Mark A. Hall. Variant names: Giant monkey, Nalusa Falaya.

Physical description: Height, 3—8 feet. Light brown t o black hair. Point ed ears. Baboonlike or doglike muzzle. St rong chest. A blaze of whit e fur from neck t o belly. Short forelegs wit h claws. Muscular hind legs. Large feet. A long t ail is somet imes report ed, alt ernat ely described as black and bushy or hairless.

Behavior: Somet imes walks bipedally, at ot her t imes quadrupedally. Aggressive t oward dogs and humans. Emit s a wide range of hoot s, calls, screams, and whist les. Said t o kill livest ock and small game.

Tracks: Three rounded t oes, wit h regular spacing between. Length, 12—15 inches.

Distribution: Brit ish Columbia; Appalachian Mount ain region of t he Unit ed St at es.

Significant sightings: Early one morning in 1959, a monkeylike creat ure rushed at t he car of a couple driving down a rural road near Salt ville, Virginia. It chased t he vehicle for a short while, grabbing at it wit h it s front paws. Lat er, t hey found t hree long, deep scrat ches in t he met al from t he front door to t he rear. Around t he same t ime, t he animal apparent ly ripped off t he convert ible t op of a car driven by t wo nurses.

After midnight on June 26, 1997, Debbie Cross saw a st range animal out side her rural home near Dunkinsville, Ohio. It was 3-4 feet tall, hairy, and wit h long arms and a short t ail. As it moved away from her, it walked on it s knuckles.

A giant black monkey was spot t ed in rural Danville, New Hampshire, on September 9, 2001, and on at least nine other occasions over a t wo-week period.

Present status: Distinctions between North American Apes, Devil monkeys, Hairy Bipeds, and BiGFOOT are nebulous and possibly arbit rary. In general, North American Apes are tailless and primarily quadrupedal, and t hey resemble chimpanzees; Devil monkeys are t ailed and resemble baboons; Hairy Bipeds cover a wide range of descript ions from apes t o wildmen and even paranormal entities; BiGFOOT is a robust, t all hominid wit h a range t hat seems rest rict ed t o t he Pacific Nort hwest. Loren Coleman even not es cert ain similarit ies wit h Phantom Kangaroo reports and suggests that juvenile Devil monkeys may resemble kangaroos. Possible explanations:

(1) Feral pet monkeys have formed breeding colonies, especially in Florida. A group of Squirrel monkeys (Saimiri sciureus) live in Broward Count y's Hugh Taylor Birch St at e Park, and Rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta) became well est ablished around Silver Springs aft er t hey were first released int o t he wild in Marion Count y during t he filming of Tarzan movies in 1933. Rhesus monkeys are also known in Jack Kaye Park in Fort Lauderdale. A few of t he 500 monkeys uncaged in 1992 by Hurricane Andrew from research labs, privat e owners, and t he Miami Met rozoo are probably st ill living and breeding in t he Everglades. Some officials believe Capuchin monkeys (Cebus devil monkey 127

spp.) are forming t roops in sout h Florida. A free-roaming group of Japanese macaques (Macaca fuscata) was brought t o Dilley, Texas, in 1972 t o save t he animals from dest ruct ion in Kyot o, Japan, where t hey are regarded as a nuisance; in 1980, t he monkeys became t he propert y of t he Sout h Texas Primat e Observat ory and were confined for behavioral research at a ranch t here. But in t he lat e 1980s, t heir enclosure fell int o disrepair, and several escaped. The monkeys have roamed t he sout h Texas brush ever since, t heir populat ion swelling t o more t han 600 by 1995. However, none of t hese colonies are in areas where Devil monkeys have been report ed.

(2) Surviving Protopithecus brasiliensis (or relat ed species), an ext inct, fruit -eat ing spider monkey from t he Lat e Pleist ocene of east ern Brazil t hat was t wice as large as any ext ant species, suggest ed by Chad Arment.

(3) Surviving Theropithecus oswaldi, a large baboon t hat lived 650,000 years ago in East Africa and is t he ancest or of t he modern Gelada baboon (T. gelada), suggest ed by Mark A. Hall. The male was roughly t he size of a female gorilla and weighed 250 pounds. A ground dweller, t his animal was t oo big t o live in t rees and could not use it s long forearms for swinging.

Sources: Chad Arment, "Virginia Devil Monkey Reports," North American BioFortean Review 2, no. 1 (2000): 34-37, ht t p://www. st rangeark.com/nabr/NABR1.pdf; Chad Arment, "Devil Monkeys or Wampus Cat s?" North American BioFortean Review 2, no. 2 (2000): 45-48, ht t p://www.st rangeark. com/nabr/NABR4.pdf; Loren Coleman, Mysterious America, rev. ed. (New York: Paraview, 2001), pp. 184-187.

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