If you look at the scattering of small family and social
groupings of rhesus macaques monkeys today you might not
suspect that once upon a time there were more monkeys than
trees in Nepal's beautiful Kathmandu Valley. |
The 20th century's intense human use of land resources has impinged on the monkey population and living space. Vastly decreased in number, our distant cousins, are relegated to living mostly in Hindu temples and the small state protected forests. Although they prefer to roam around Nepal's less frequented little temples and shrines, a sizable group resides at Pashupatinath, a Hindu temple, dedicated to the God Shiva, situated on a river bank next to a hill covered with dense vegetation. It was here that these pictures were taken.
At Pashupatinath, they go about their lives, charming the tourists and aggravating the temple's human residents. Though generally peaceful, occasionally an older male will attack someone who has trespassed on "their" territory.
One does well to look and not touch.
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