South African farmer Alwyn van der Merwe said workers noticed several years ago that one of his tangerine trees was already stripped of fruit when the other trees were ready for picking. The same thing happened the next year and the next. A farmworker finally solved the mystery when he saw baboons picking the tree clean. This one tree was making ripe tangerines three to four weeks ahead of the others.
Van der Merwe said tests showed the fruit is sweeter and ripens faster. He produced more of the trees using grafts. His ALG Estates, a family citrus business north of Cape Town, will soon be exporting the tangerines, van der Merwe said.
After some time, and I swear I am not making this up, it is said that Jack learned to change the signals at the train yard. He responded to the horn blasts from the engineers and changed the signals accordingly. Locals swear that Jack never made an error. In fact, Cape Town train officials, after hearing of the monkey bidness up the road, came to investigate. Skeptical, they agreed to test Jack's competence and the little guy passed with flying colors. After he aced the signal exam, Jack was officially given a government salary (bananas?) and was issued an employee number. Really.
There are tributes to Jack the Signalman, as he was known, at the Albany Museum in Grahamstown (they have Jack's skull) and the Uitenhage Railway Station.
We may have to start a monkey revolution category, today brings us another article about monkeys asserting themselves over humans. In Kenya, the monkeys are harassing women and children as they go about their daily business by touching their genitals and making "lewd gestures." It has caused one local MP, Paul Muite, to speak to the parliament.
"Can the minister deploy game rangers in Karai location in Kabete to deal with the monkey menace?" he asked the tourism and wildlife minister, Morris Dzoro, to laughs in the chamber.
"These creatures have clearly shown that they have no respect for women."
The women feel so "sexually harassed" by the monkeys touching their business that they have taken to dressing as men to fool the monkeys.