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Extreme Heat in Mexico Causes Howler Monkeys to Drop Dead

monkeys

Authorities in Mexico said on Monday that they were looking into whether the intense heat was causing the endangered howler monkeys to perish.

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The Environment Ministry lists “heat stroke, dehydration, malnutrition, or pesticide fumigation of crops” as among the causes under investigation.

It stated that research would be done to rule out any illness or virus.

In the southern states of Chiapas and Tabasco, where the deaths have been reported, temperatures as high as 45 degrees Celsius (113 degrees Fahrenheit) have been recorded.

While the government did not say how many primates had perished, Tabasco-based wildlife preservation group COBIUS reported “mass deaths.”

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“It’s very likely due to climatic reasons but we cannot rule out other important causes,” it said in a statement.

“If you see monkeys that are weak and apparently suffering from heat or dehydration, please try to hoist a bucket of water by rope for them to drink,” it added.

President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, who hails from Tabasco, also pointed to extreme heat as the likely cause.

“The heat is very strong. Since I’ve been visiting these states I’ve never felt it as much as I do now,” he said at his regular news conference.

Authorities and conservationists were carrying out patrols to provide water and food, mainly fruits, to help monkeys stay hydrated, the Tabasco civil protection institute said.

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