Monkeys turning into electronic DJs at zoo in bizarre experiment

Monkeys have started experimenting with electronic music at a zoo in a bizarre experiment.

Researchers built a sound device the animals could listen to in their enclosure at Helsinki's Korkeasaari Zoo in Finland.

The tunnel-shaped device was made out of wood and plastic for the white-face saki monkeys.

Scientists chose four soundtracks, covering electronic music, sounds of rain, calm music and traffic noises.

For some unknown reason, the sakis preferred the latter.

The monkeys had control over the device, and could turn it on and off at their leisure, reports.

Roosa Piitulainen, the first author of the research paper and doctoral candidate at Aalto University in Espoo, Finland, said: "We didn't measure welfare factors, but from a welfare perspective, it was essential to give animals decision-making power and independence.

“These issues have been linked to well-being in other studies. Instead of just playing music and other sounds in their living environment and seeing how it works, we gave them a system that they could approach and use themselves.”

During the study, the monkeys began to sleep, groom and socialise inside the device.

Kirsi Pynnonen-Oudman, research coordinator at the zoo, said: "Sounds are really important to many animals in their communication with each other.

"The rainforest is full of different sounds, and little monkeys are supposed to be sensitive to different sounds."

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The full study, led by Aalto University’s Department of Computer Science has been published on MDPI.

Earlier this month, orangutans were pictured fighting with each other in a boxing ring at a zoo in Cambodia.

The zoo, in Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia, has been accused of animal abuse, local newspaper the Khmer Times reported.

The orangutans had to brawl in front of a crowd before a winner was announced and congratulated.

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One visitor wrote on Tripadvisor: "I regret visiting Phnom Penh Safari, but it did open my eyes to the animal cruelty that people do for the sake of tourism money.

"When I visited the elephants, I saw deep wounds on the top and sides of their head. I also witnessed their caretakers using bullhooks to hurt them into obedience, and the elephants were repeatedly stabbed to perform for tourists.

"I just looked on in horror. This was the same for their tigers, orangutans, and crocodile shows.

"Please don’t support this kind of tourism! I, for one, want to teach my children more compassion."

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