SANTA FE, Texas – A woman who claimed she saw a primate on the loose in Santa Fe has prompted a search for the animal in the Galveston County town, according to police.
A spokesman for Santa Fe police said the woman reported that she saw a chimpanzee sometime Monday morning, and another report of a monkey sighting was received Tuesday morning. Officials said they are not sure if the animal is a monkey or a chimpanzee, which is actually an ape.
Sarah Haywood, of Bayou Animal Services, said crews have been searching an area along 19th Street since the reported sighting.
Haywood said that while she has received several social media messages about a primate sighting, those people did not respond to requests for follow-up information.
Regardless of the credibility of the reports, Haywood said people should not approach the primate if there is indeed one on the loose. She said a team certified in dealing with primates is assisting in the search.
“This may be a hoax of the century, but we are taking it seriously,” Haywood said.
In a Facebook post, Bayou Animal Services said people should try to safely photograph the animal if they see it and call animal control as soon as possible.
Police said they do not plan on having officers search for the primate unless there is another call about it.