Different of what is the popular rumor, bananas are not the favorite food for monkeys. And even though it may feel that it doesn’t affect to feed these majestic animals, here is why it is actually really bad for the monkeys, you, and the jungle.
I never thought giving food to the wildlife was harmful… until someone got me out of the idea… and I am profundly thankful! As yes! It is bad, for the monkeys, for the forest and for the planet!
Fortunately, the Kids Saving the Rainforest organization taught me an important lesson. The Organization was founded by two young girls, this amazing nonprofit wildlife sanctuary in Costa Rica is protecting the rainforest but, as well, the incredible biodiversity that lives in it.
The President of the foundation, Jen Rice, puts it: “You might find that giving food to the monkeys (and other wild animals) is a thrilling experience, but you are not doing the monkeys a favor. In fact, you are actually harming them.”
1. Monkeys are very susceptible to diseases from human hands
Monkeys can actually die from bacteria transferred by human hands.
Since monkeys live in a very different environment than humans, they are exposed to different types of bacteria. If they’re introduced to foreign bacteria, such as something that could have come from your skin, they may not have the proper defense system to fight it off and could be more susceptible to illness, which can lead to awful situations.
Therefore, if you get the incredible opportunity to hang out with monkeys, treat the situation much like a museum: look, but don’t touch.
2. Migration to human-populated areas to be fed raises the risk of dog attacks and road accidents
Instinctively, monkeys have an understanding of what is safe in their environment. When they move outside of this setting, they are faced with dangers they are not prepared for.
It’s like raising a kitten in your house for years and then one day releasing it into the jungle. The domesticated cat is going to have a lot of difficulties bending to the wild, just as a wild monkey will face unknown dangers in our modern world.
When monkeys are fed by humans in more populated areas, they approach humans and suddenly become very susceptible to foreign dangers in these atmospheres.
Like dog attacks. And road accidents.
3. Uneven feeding leads to an aggressive behavior towards humans and other species
If a monkey receives food from a human, they assume the next time they see a person with food they are going to get some.
Let’s keep our food to ourselves and let’s not induce aggressive behavior with our monkey friends.
4. Contrary to the stereotype, bananas are not the favorite food of monkeys in the wild
It turns out, bananas are native only to South Asia & Australia so they never existed in any other country on Earth before humans started to farm them.
Mind blowing, right?
Because of this, monkeys in Central America do not even have the proper digestive system for these foreign foods–especially if they’re not wild bananas since farmed ones contain pesticides.
Lastly, there is a lot of sugar in bananas (it’s why they like them so much) which can lead monkeys to have severe dental problems and even diabetes (yes, monkeys can get diabetes).
5. Feeding generates a dangerous dependency on humans that diminishes the monkeys’ survival abilities
Every day a monkey is reliant on a human for food, they diminish their ability to naturally find it in the wild.
As this lasts, it becomes very dangerous for the monkey to live on its own. By feeding the monkeys, we are literally robbing them of their survival abilities and increasing the likelihood they will won’t live as long.
So the bananas are not helping them; they’re hurting them.
6. Feeding interferes with the monkeys’ natural habits and upsets the balance of their lifestyle
The natural diet and lifestyle of monkeys are positioned around eating wild fruits, seeds, small animals, and insects.
If we disrupt this practice by feeding them other food, it can negatively impact their daily lifestyle and how they naturally interrelate with their environment.
This isn’t good at all, but there is also unknown negative side effects this may cause in the complex web that is our ecology within the animal kingdom.
7. Contact with humans facilitates robbing and the trade in illegal wildlife
Believe it or not, there are people who will actually capture and porch monkeys for economy gain and when a monkey does not have a natural fear of humans, it is more likely they will be captured by a poacher compared to a monkey who retains their natural caution of human beings.
In fact, Kids Saving the Rainforest won’t even release monkeys from their sanctuary back into the wild if they have no fear of humans because of the risk it imposes on the monkey.
Unluckily, the more contact monkeys have with humans, the more it decreases their talent to survive in the jungle.
8. Pregnant females who are fed only with bananas during their pregnancy will not give birth to healthy infants.
If monkeys become solely dependent for food via humans, it can have unsafe consequences.
Since bananas are not a regular part of their diet, if they’re only fed bananas during their pregnancy, the infants will be malnourished, or never develop to term, and even die before birth.
9. Monkeys have to travel an average of 17 kilometers each day to be in good physical condition
Unlike humans, monkeys aren’t going to work out for the sake of remaining in shape. If they know that delicious food is readily available in a safe location, they are going to travel there and stay.
This can be tremendously harmful to monkeys since it is essential for them to hunt and quest for food naturally so they can stay in shape physically.
10. Not only do we pass on diseases to animals when we feed them by hand, but they can pass diseases to humans as well
The monkeys do not realize any of this but now WE do.
Don’t facilitate the extinction of one of Nature’s most impressive creatures for your own pleasure or financial gain.
Please help save the monkeys by reporting anyone feeding the monkeys at the following number: 506-2777-2592.
If you are feeding the monkeys, you now know why you should not. If you don’t stop, we owe it to the monkeys to publish your name in the local media.