A photo of a Formosan macaque sitting in a cubicle at National Sun Yat-Sen University (NSYSU) in Kaohsiung, southern Taiwan, has made a splash on social media, as it appears to show the monkey deeply absorbed in the humdrum of daily office life.
“Currently, universities are on vacation, but look who’s at work in the communication office at Sun Yat-sen University,” Chang Morgan posted on Facebook.
Lin Meiyin, secretary-general of the Taiwan Macaque Coexistence Promotion Association said that Sun Yat-sen University’s location is an original habitat of the Formosan Macaque, and that it’s quite common for the animals to enter offices and classrooms if doors or windows are left open.
While the monkeys may go in search of food, it’s not a sign of shortage of natural food in winter. The male monkeys are actively seeking new communities and mating partners, Lin said.
NSYSU Senior Vice President Huang I-yu said the university had previously installed protective window screens to deal with the issue and regularly reminds staff not to leave doors open.
The school has also purchased paintball guns and keeps a pack of ten dogs on campus to scare the monkeys away, he said.
In the past, there have been multiple incidents of macaques sneaking into student dorms to steal instant noodles and rifle through their belongings, according to Huang.
The Agriculture Bureau of the Kaohsiung City Government promotes a “three noes policy” for macaques: no feeding, no interference, and no contact, to ensure the safety of citizens, tourists, and the macaques.
The Formosan rock macaque, also known as the Taiwan macaque, is native to the temperate forests in the mountains of Taiwan. They are the only non-human primates native to Taiwan. The species also exists in parts of Japan due to a series of both deliberate and accidental introductions that occurred in the mid-20th century.