Over the past 80 years, an amazing diversity of research has taken place on Cayo. Some scientists, like myself, study cognition.
Morgan Island, South Carolina - Wikipedia
My students and I analyze how the monkeys think and solve problems. Do they follow where others are looking to find out what they see, as humans do? Surprisingly, yes! We know who their parents are, how they treat their children and, ultimately, their fate. After Hurricane Maria made landfall 30 minutes south of Cayo Santiago, scientists in the United States scrambled to make contact with students , staff and friends in Puerto Rico. Several days later we finally managed to reach Angelina Ruiz Lambides, the director of the research station.
Scientists arranged a helicopter so that she could survey Punta Santiago and Cayo Santiago. The photos and videos she sent back were devastating.
Hundredth monkey effect
Punta Santiago, where many of the staff live, was destroyed. Cayo Santiago, formerly two lush islands connected by an isthmus, was unrecognizable. The forests were brown, the mangroves were flooded and the isthmus was submerged. Research labs and other infrastructure were in pieces. Yet the monkeys were spotted!
Somehow, defying our expectations, many of the Cayo monkeys had weathered the storm. Over the next few days other staff traveled to Cayo in small boats and started searching for each individual monkey, like 00O — a process that will take weeks. Read More UFOs.
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Well, sort of.
They live on Monkey Island. In the late s, the original monkey colony of was moved to Morgan Island from a research facility in Puerto Rico. This happened after several monkeys infected with a virus escaped the facility and caused outbreaks among the locals in Puerto Rico; and the state of South Carolina offered the island for research. The colony is provided food, water and veterinary care in compliance with federal laws.
The monkeys offer entertainment of all kinds for folks who come by in boats and kayaks…and they sure are cute, but quite dangerous.