Twitter | okadennis

Animals Are Beginning To Explore Cities While Humans Are Social Distancing

Amy Pilkington 21 Mar 2020

Depending on where you live, you may be only a few days into spending a lot of quality time at home or you have long-since crossed the Rubicon into temporary insanity.

Regardless, city streets throughout the world are looking far more sparse than we've ever seen them before and, in some, residents are noticing a few new pedestrians exploring.

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For example, in Nara, Japan, an entire herd of deer was seen wandering the empty streets.

Twitter | @okadennis

Nara Park is home to the deer and a popular tourist attraction. They're used to human interaction, but don't usually stray beyond the park borders.

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But according to Twitter user @okadennis, it's now a daily occurrence to see them grazing on grass around their neighborhood.

Some reports say that tourists are sold crackers to feed the deer and the lack of tourism has caused the animals to go in search of food.

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Since the park still has plenty of grass, it seems more likely to me that they're simply exploring after discovering the lack of traffic and other scary things.

It's hard to blame them. This must be such a highly unusual circumstance for them. It's really only natural that they would want to explore.

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In Thailand, a video was captured showing a huge crowd of agitated monkeys swarming through the street.

Reddit | Sasaluk Rattanachai

The monkeys are also used to receiving food from tourists, which sparked rumors that they are starving and angrily in search of food.

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It's quite unsettling to see such large swarms of monkeys roaming the streets, but apparently they aren't actually starving.

A report from Reuters says that locals are continuing to feed the monkeys and they aren't in danger of starving.

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In Italy, wild boars were seen in one town overnight.

Tumblr | taylorswifh

They even brought their baby with them to explore.

In some cases, the animals may simply be confused.

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How these sheep ended up roaming an Italian street is also unclear.

Tumblr | bi-until-theday-idie

As is whether a shepherd will be able to round them up and get them back to their pasture, too.

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For example, this horse may have simply gotten free from its stable.

Tumblr | dopo-magari-lo-cambio

Perhaps on a normal day, someone would have been nearby to catch it right away, but with empty streets, who knows how far it has wandered.

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Of course, with these true stories, fakes and misunderstandings are going viral too.

Twitter | @Spilling_The_T

A delightful story about 14 elephants wandering into a village, drinking a bunch of corn wine, and then passing out in a tea garden is sadly untrue.

Though elephants did wander into the village of Manmai on March 11, rather than cute shenanigans, they entered homes and caused a ton of damage. They were not the elephants in the viral images.

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Similarly, a viral tweet about fish and swans returning to the Venice canals was more aspirational than true.

Twitter | @ikaveri

While it is true that the waters are clearer due to lack of boat traffic, the swans are a common sight in Burano, an island within the Venice metro area. They never left and so didn't "return".

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