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Last Updated: Monday October 02 2006 11:28 GMT

Loud monkeys to scare thieves

Wing the howler monkey - picture: Exmoor Zoo

A pair of screaming monkeys have been brought into a zoo to scare off thieves who might try to break in.

The zoo lost 11 marmoset monkeys earlier this year when thieves stole the tiny creatures from their cages.

It's hoped the two howler monkeys, called Greeb and Wing, will act as an alarm system as they 'scream' very loudly if they're disturbed or upset.

A man from Exmoor Zoo in Devon said he hopes the bigger monkeys - which can also bite - will scare off burglars.

Big teeth

Greeb the howler monkey - picture: Exmoor Zoo
As well as making a big noise, the pair have large teeth and weigh up to 15kg so it would be very hard for monkey-collectors to steal them.

Danny Reynolds of Exmoor Zoo said: "They use their tails as a fifth limb so you have to keep out of their way when you clean their cage - they are a handful!"


After a massive search two of the marmosets stolen from Exmoor were found in a back garden. They have since returned to the zoo.

Greeb and Wing moved to their home in Barnstable about three weeks ago. They eat lots of leaves, vegetables and fruit and in the wild the creatures use screams to find each other.

It's hoped the couple might have babies soon.

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