7 critically endangered spider monkeys found stuffed in backpack at Texas border, smuggler arrested

Suspect arrested for trying to smuggle primates across Texas border

U.S. Border Patrol agents found seven spider monkeys in a backpack earlier this month at the Texas border.

Footage released by the U.S. Border Patrol’s Rio Grande Valley Sector on Aug. 3 shows the monkeys stuffed in a backpack that appears to have airholes punched into it.

The footage can be seen in the media player at the top of this article.

According to a statement from U.S. Border Patrol officials, arrested a suspect for attempted wildlife smuggling.

The critically endangered monkeys were handed over to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Their current condition is unknown.

The Wildlife Conservation Society notes that spider monkeys are among the 25 most threatened primates in the world due to high rates of deforestation related to illegal drug trafficking.

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About the Author:

Mary Claire Patton has been a journalist with KSAT 12 since 2015. She has reported on several high-profile stories during her career at KSAT and specializes in trending news and things to do around Texas and San Antonio.