You may have seen Babe, the movie where a pig learns to herd sheep, but did you know there’s an even weirder real life version of this story?
Mani the monkey works as a shepherd at a goat farm in Kerala, India. She is in charge of 32 goats. Every morning, Mani leads them out to graze on nearby hills and brings them home when they’re all done.
As the images show, she isn’t even a large monkey, being considerably smaller than any of his goat flock. However, she uses her small size to her advantage. Instead of herding the goats from a distance, she jumps on their backs and steers them by pinching on their ears.
Mani also protects the goats from wild animals, personally attacking any predators. She arrived at the farm in 2008, badly wounded. But she was nursed back to health and now has 3 children of her own. But despite being a mother, Mani has plenty time to be in charge of the goats.
P.J Martin, the owner of the farm that Mani the monkey works on, said this to the Animal Liberation Front about his hairiest employee, “I got this monkey three years ago, bleeding all over. I applied medicine and left it with the goats. Afterwards he was always with the goats.” Clearly, Mani the monkey formed an incredibly close bond with the goats as she recovered and has been helping them ever since. What’s really crazy is that P.J Martin didn’t provide Mani any training, and as far as we know, Mani had never before witnessed the farmer tending to his goat herd. Mani just picked up the goat herding skills instinctively.
Mani has also become something of a tourist attraction, with tourists regularly visiting to see the monkey at work. Considering that this incredible monkey is entirely unique, it’s not hard to understand why people would want to see such a site!