Lop Buri, an 800-year-old city in Thailand was turned into a battleground on Thursday 12 March as two rival monkey ‘gangs’ clashed in the streets due to the lack of available food as a result of the sudden drop in tourism.

The city is known for its large population of crab-eating macaques (Macaca fascicularis). These long-tailed primates are a major tourist attraction, and Lop Buri is one of only a few places in the world where you can witness thousands of macaques roaming free. It is also believed that these monkeys bring good luck to people.

The spread of COVID-19 has resulted in a large drop in tourist arrivals at Lop Buri, just like many other tourist destinations around the world. As a result, footage of two rival monkey factions clashing in a fierce battle over what little food is left in the ancient city has surfaced.

Sasaluk Rattanachai, a local resident, posted the video to his Facebook profile where it quickly went viral.

Watch the video below:



In an interview with local news site Khaosod English, Rattanachai had this to say about the brawl:

‘It’s the summer so usually we see a lot of tourists, but now because of the outbreak there’s so few that the markets are very quiet, ‘Not enough tourists come to leave food for the monkeys at [the temple].’



Thankfully the fight led to no casualties, and by late afternoon city residents had laid out food offerings at the temple, which helped ease tensions between the two groups.

Image: Facebook/Sasaluk Rattanachai