Tupelo Seeks Missing Monkey

Oliver, a 9-year-old capuchin monkey, escaped from the Tupelo, Miss., Buffalo Park and Zoo on Tuesday. Ann Stewart, manager of the zoo's gift shop, talks about the search for him.

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ALEX COHEN, host:

And now, a little monkey business. Oliver, a 9-year-old capuchin monkey, escaped from the Tupelo Buffalo Park and Zoo in Mississippi earlier this week. He is still on the lam.

Ann Stewart is the manager of the zoo's gift shop and she joins us now. Welcome to the program, Ann.

ANN STEWART (Tupelo Buffalo Park and Zoo Gift Shop): Thank you. How are you?

COHEN: I'm doing well. Ann, Oliver was kept in a pen, presumably a locked pen.

Ms STEWART: Yes.

COHEN: So how exactly did this little guy get out?

Ms. STEWART: Well, it was dummy-locked, you know, like it was unlocked but it was - looked like it was locked. He just messed with it, and he got it open.

COHEN: Oliver apparently no dummy.

Ms. STEWART: He's no dummy, that's right.

COHEN: I understand that this guy has escaped before. You would think after that they would know to lock the pen, right?

Ms. STEWART: Well, he wasn't here at the zoo the first time.

COHEN: And when he escaped the last time, he wound up at the local country club.

Ms. STEWART: Yeah.

COHEN: Oliver seems to have very good taste. Did you look around the country club at all?

Ms. STEWART: The country club people have been watching for him over there for us.

COHEN: But they haven't seen him?

Ms. STEWART: No. He had crossed a five-lane highway. He crossed it, and he's over in a pasture right now. They're on their way over there with his mate.

COHEN: Oliver has a girlfriend?

Ms. STEWART: Oh yeah, he's got a little girlfriend.

COHEN: Does she have a name?

Ms. STEWART: Baby.

COHEN: Oliver and Baby. Okay, so they're bringing Baby to the pasture and they're going to try to lure him back with Baby?

Ms. STEWART: They're going to try to lure him out to them where they can catch him.

COHEN: Mm. Have you spent any time with Oliver? What kind of a monkey is he?

Ms. STEWART: Everybody here pays attention to him. I guess you could say we spoil him. I mean, I've been known to go out and give him Cheetos to eat and junk stuff.

COHEN: He likes Cheetos?

Ms. STEWART: Oh, yeah, he likes Cheetos.

COHEN: Does he have a specific variety? Does he go in for the flaming hot Cheetos?

Ms. STEWART: No, no, I don't eat that, so I give him what I'd eat.

COHEN: You would think with all this love and affection that Oliver would never want to leave. Why do you think he ran away?

Ms. STEWART: I guess he wanted a little bit of freedom for a while.

COHEN: I understand that the zoo has told people that if they see Oliver, not to pet him, because...

Ms. STEWART: No, he may not bite, but he may bite. I mean, he's temperamental. He's a temperamental little monkey.

COHEN: Has the zoo security talked at all about what they'll do once they get him back to make sure this doesn't happen again?

Ms. STEWART: I'm sure he will be locked up in his little house before any gates are opened up.

COHEN: Ann Stewart is the manager of the gift shop at the Tupelo Buffalo Park and Zoo in Mississippi. Thank you so much, Ann.

Ms. STEWART: Thank you.

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