Video Shows Monkey That Mysteriously Appeared on Kentucky Man's Porch

Kentucky wildlife officers are investigating after a young capuchin monkey was found on the porch of an Owen County home on March 22.

Audrey Lewis, who shared pictures of the primate on Facebook, said it was first spotted outside her grandfather's home in Owenton last Sunday and appeared to have been in the area for several days, noting that it was cautious and clearly "very smart."

It remains unknown where the monkey came from, but Lewis said it had been wearing a harness and appeared to have been behaving fine around humans. "There is no doubt he is someone's pet," she wrote on Facebook on March 23

The family started feeding the monkey—including a baked potato, crackers, a cookie, and peanut butter—and placed a kennel on the porch in an attempt to safely confine it for local conservation officers. But it was not easily fooled by the lure.

Lewis wrote: "We set out a live trap and I kid you not, he reached in the trap, felt the trigger, reached over the trigger, grabbed the cookie, and went back out.

"He showed a lot of curiosity for coming into the house and at one point actually opened the screen door on his own which resulted in him scaring himself and screaming for a few minutes. He did eventually come inside where he jumped one big circle around the house and then pushed the door open and let himself back out."

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Eventually, after two hours of bonding, the family was able to get the animal into a cage and Lewis posted a video of the capuchin monkey sitting on her lap.

"After an hour or so of figuring each other out, he and I shared a banana and then he curled up to take a nap in my lap," she wrote in a caption alongside the clip.

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The monkey was collected by Kentucky Fish and Wildlife conservation officers and sent to the Primate Rescue Center in Nicholasville, where it will live under care for the rest of its life. It is currently illegal to keep a primate as a pet in the state of Kentucky.

Eileen Dallaire, executive director of the primate center, told WAVE that the monkey is believed to be female and about one year old. "She is a little bit skinny so our focus is all about her," she said. "It's not about anything other than... what's best for her."

Kevin Kelly, chief communications officer of the state's Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources, told local media: "It's unusual. On the list of animals you may find under a porch, a capuchin monkey is probably not going to come first to mind."

Kelly added: "Kentucky primates are considered inherently dangerous wildlife, so it's illegal to import or possess monkeys or any primates here in the commonwealth."

Officials are seeking to determine where the monkey came from and are urging anyone with information about how it got into Owen County to contact the wildlife agency.

 capuchin monkey
A zookeeper holds a capuchin monkey at the Animal Rescue Center Zoo de Castellar, in Castellar de la Frontera, southern Spain, on February 20, 2021. Kentucky wildlife officers are investigating after a young capuchin monkey was found on the porch of an Owen County home on March 22. ORGE GUERRERO/AFP/Getty Images