Marauding, biting monkey recaptured

Last updated 17:21 25/01/2011
Fugitive monkey
AP
DANGEROUS: Residents are advised to lock their doors while Lucky is on the run.

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A marauding monkey confined to a zoo after it bit 120 people during a two-month rampage in resort towns of central Japan briefly escaped captivity before it was captured again.

The macaque named Lucky slipped out of a government-run nature park yesterday while a keeper was cleaning her cage. Officials raised the alert across the scenic town of Mishima, where she had attacked residents last year. Park and city officials found Lucky at a public park today, a day later.

"Her capture was easy. We called her name repeatedly, and she came to us," city official Hidetsugu Uchida said. "She has been used to being called by her name."

Lucky will be sent back to Mishima's Rakujuen zoo where she has become one of the most famous residents since her previous capture in October.

Macaques are one of the most common wild mammals in Japan, and are considered a nuisance in rural areas where they damage crops and steal food.

Lucky lived wild in a mountainous area before her two-month biting spree in Mishima and other resort towns near Mount Fuji in central Japan.

She attacked people from behind, targeting mostly children and elderly women and biting and scratching their arms and legs. Lucky proved tough to catch the first time, avoiding citywide monkey hunts for weeks.

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- AP

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