Are you or someone you know missing a monkey? Because although Florida is known for having colonies of invasive "wild" monkeys, a presumed pet marmoset was recently captured in Lee County according to the most recent Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC) Law Enforcement Weekly Reports press release.
"Lee County Investigators Mia Ruggiero, Scott Thompson, and Lieutenant Stuart Spoede were on land patrol when they responded to a report of an unrestrained monkey," the release dated July 21-27 states, in part. "Investigator Thompson and Lieutenant Spoede were first on the scene and confirmed the sighting of a marmoset monkey."
Marmosets are small, tree-dwelling monkeys belonging to the family Callitrichidae. They are part of the New World monkeys and are native to the tropical rainforests of South America but have found popularity as exotic pets in America, due in part to their small size.
While there are several species of nonnative monkeys that have established colonies throughout areas of the state, the FWC's webpage on nonnative monkeys state marmosets are not one of those species.
According to the release, Investigator Ruggiero arrived on scene and the three of them worked together to capture the animal and since an owner has not been identified, the marmoset is being cared for at a licensed facility.
Marmosets, among a variety of other wildlife, are considered Class III wildlife species in Florida and require a permit to own. Permits for keeping Class III wildlife as personal pets are free and last for two years.
You can find the full July 21-27 FWC release on their website here.