The zoo says they regret that Odon got a hold of a cigarette and suggests that a guard was on break when the incident occurred.
A smoking monkey isn’t as rare as you would think, or hope.
According to BBC, an orangutan at Indonesia’s Bandung Zoo has picked up the bad habit after a visitor to the park flicked a lit cigarette into the animal’s exhibit.
Video of the incident shows the guest throwing in the cigarette and Odon the orangutan picking it up and puffing on it while the crowd laughs.
As the video spreads across the internet, the zoo is working on damage control. The Bandung Zoo stated that they find the video regrettable and believe the guard near the orangutan enclosure could’ve been on break when this happened.
Unfortunately, it is common for zoo animals in Indonesia to have insufficient care according to the founder of the Indonesia Animal Welfare Society, Marison Guciano. Many zoo residents are harassed by guests who throw food and cigarettes into their exhibits, and often live in dirty cages as a result.
Tori, an orangutan at the Taru Jurug zoo, also learned how to smoke from the cigarettes that landed in her enclosure. Once visitors learned of the primate’s habit, many would purposefully throw the animal lit cigarettes to get her to smoke. The issue became so bad that the zoo ultimately had to move Tori to a place where visitors could not reach her.