Lopburi locals demand action as macaque mischief escalates

Image courtesy of Pattaya News

Locals of Prang Khaek in Mueng District of Lopburi held a press conference on Monday and installed protest signs regarding the lack of action from Thai Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin and the Thai Department of National Parks, Wildlife, and Plant Conservation in tackling the sizeable macaque problem in their area, which left locals vulnerable to attack.

The protest leader was Kanchantang Kitrattanakarn, a 68 year old local. Alongside five other individuals, he filed a letter to the chairmen of the Land Commission, Natural Resources and Environment, and the House of Representatives.

The protest came two months following the signing of an MOU between the relevant agencies to address the macaque problem. Kanchantang said not much has been accomplished since the MOU signing.

“Nothing was progressing and the locals were blamed for bullying the macaques after they defended themselves from being attacked by the macaques.”

In a previous agreement, the Department of National Parks pledged to capture 2000 of the estimated 5000 macaques in Lopburi. The plan was to relocate the monkeys to a designated zoo.

This plan, however, appears to be on an indefinite hold.

Kanchantang’s involvement extended beyond the recent protest. He has sent personal letters to the Thai Prime Minister and held meetings with relevant agencies numerous times. He aimed to highlight the nuisance and inconvenience caused by the macaques.

It is worth noting that the macaque problem escalated recently, with locals reporting multiple attacks in the past few months.

In an ironic twist, the same day as the protest, local media reported that the protest signs were torn up and destroyed by the very macaques the protest was about.

The macaque issue is not new. On April 11, a group of macaques reportedly stole food offerings made to monks and novices. Following this incident, the novices opted to avoid this route altogether.

Temple guardians reportedly resorted to using airsoft guns to fend off the macaques. However, this strategy was only effective for a few days before the macaques grew unafraid, in a clear display of the tension between man and wildlife.

It is a story that continues to unfold, with local protests and media scrutiny highlighting the complexities of the issue and the urgent need for a resolution, as reported by Pattaya News.

Thailand News


Top is a multifaceted news writer with a keen interest in real estate and travel. Top currently covers local Thai news at Thaiger. As a travel buff, Top blogs about his travels- around the world and Thailand- during his free time.

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