Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Are you bananas? Stop monkeying around!

Is she completely bananas? Monkey lover takes her troop of macaques everywhere

Last updated at 6:14 PM on 19th July 2011
    Monkey lover Connie Tibbs will argue she is anything but bananas - however these pictures prove otherwise.
Mrs Tibbs, 37, is so obsessed with her pet macaques - all five of them, that she refuses to let them out of her sight. 
Don't forget the bananas! Tibbs shops for supplies at her local supermarket
Don't forget the bananas! Connie Tibbs shops for supplies at her local supermarket in Pekin, Illinois
Whether she's shopping for the weekly supply of fruit, driving around in her home town of Pekin, Illinois, or it's just time to call it a night, her macaques are never far away.
Mrs Tibbs has revealed that her animal friends are equally fixated with her: 
'They attach to you almost like a human to a baby. If you pulled one of me, they'd scream,' she said.
'I am their mum and their world is centred around me, they adore me.'
Quite a handful: Mrs Tibbs with her five macaques. If you pulled one of me, they'd scream,' she said
Bit of a handful:  Mrs Tibbs with the whole gang. 'If you pulled one off me, they'd scream,' she said
Mrs Tibbs said that her husband Steve faces a barrage of claws from the macaques when he tries to get close.
'My husband often complains that the monkey's get more kisses and attention than he does,' she said.
Whilst her younger children Dalton, 13, and Victoria, 12, have acclimatised to their mother's obsession, Mrs Tibbs said her 17-year-old son Tanner despises the macaques, which are called Alley, Jackson, Audrey, Dexter and Jaeda.
She said: 'The monkeys to a tail all hate my boy Tanner and the feeling is mutual.'
Pool party: Steve, Dalton and Victoria (from right to left) take three of the monkeys for a swim
Pool party: Steve Tibbs with Dalton, centre, and Victoria take three of the monkeys for a swim
Mrs Tibbs, who runs a pet shop on the family farm, gives the macaques a weekly bath, changes their nappies in the kitchen, and dresses them up in tiny outfits. 
She said: 'The day starts with Honey Nut loops, fruit and milk and then they wait in turn to be individually put on my lap to have their nappy changed.
'They sleep in little hammocks in a five feet by 10 feet cage at night and after their breakfast and change they are allowed out into the house.'
She even takes one of the monkeys to bed with her every night - dressed in its own pyjamas.
ibbs, 37, fills up her car at the petrol station with her two monkeys Alley, 3 and Dexter, 1,Tibbs, 37 giving monkey Jaeda, 1, a bath
Wash and go: Mrs Tibbs gives Jaeda a bath (left) and later, attempts to fill up her car with Alley and Dexter
Let's take a ride: Tibbs takes her pets for a spin
Let's take a ride: The macaques go for a spin with Mrs Tibbs, who takes them everywhere
All smiles: Tibbs (centre) and her macaques with her entire family (L-R) Steve, 60, Dalton, 13, Connie, 37, Victoria, 12 and Tanner, 17
Enough to go round: Connie Tibbs with the macaques and her family, left to right, husband Steve, Dalton, Victoria and Tanner
Lights out: Connie and husband Steve before going to bed with monkey Alley, 3
And so to bed: It's Alley's turn to don pyjamas and sleep with the humans
Mrs Tibbs explained that despite the stresses of running a business, being a mother to three teenage children and looking after her troop of macaques, she wouldn't change a thing.
She said: 'If I am draped in four monkeys in town sometimes people ask me what I think I am doing?
'I tell them that I have always wanted a monkey.'
Macaques are the most widespread of the primates and can be found from Japan to Afghanistan and, in the case of the barbary macaque, in North Africa. Twenty-two macaque species are currently recognised.

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