Barbary Macaques - Gibraltar

Guide for Locals Macaque Leaflet

Also known locally as Rock Apes the Barbary Macaque is actually a monkey. Gibraltar has the last population of wild free-ranging non-human primates in Europe.  

Made famous in 1954 when the Queen visited Gibraltar and photos and film of her children, Prince Charles and Princess Anne visiting the monkeys on the Rock went global, via Move tone news and periodicals of the day.  Now many people in Gibraltar earn an income showcasing these, the last primates in Europe to over 800,000 tourists a year, who come from all over the world.

Barbary Macaques are useful to the scientific community. As a relaxed, tolerant species with a very strong immune system and the ability to quickly solve conflicts, we have a lot to learn from them. 

What does the Helping Hand Trust do for the monkeys?

The Helping Hand Trust has been collaborating with Gibraltar Ape Management on a daily basis since 1999, starting a detailed monitoring program which still continues.  

Today the Helping Hand has the largest database in the world on Barbary Macaques which allows management to be more sophisticated than ever. Also to ensure management methods are up to date the Helping Hand has been working with international scholars, research institutes and universities who come to visit the endangered species and other local fauna and flora.  

Click testimonies to see examples.


Monkey Inquiries   

If you or another person has been bitten or scratched by a macaque.

If the wound is grievous seek medical attention. For an ambulance call: 190 (or 20075728 if not urgent)

For small cuts or surface wounds where the skin has not been broken - simply cleaning the area is usually enough as these macaques are tested regularly and are free of infectious diseases. However if you have any concerns please get medical advice. 

There are macaques in an urbanised area which are causing a problem.

Usually animals are simply travelling though the town to get from one green area to another and will not stay in the urban area for long.

If Macaques are staying in town for several hours at a time they are probably getting 'human' food in that area, usually by people illegally feeding them or not disposing leftover food properly. See the Guide for Locals at the top of this page for more information.

The Monkey Team can chase macaques out of town and do so when time allows, see below for contact details:

To have Macaque Team called out: 

Contact the police on (+350) 20072500 or 199 if it is an emergency. They will redirect your call to the macaque team or pass the message on to the team.


Contact environment Dept on (+350) 20065964 who will take your message and contact the team. 

Please note that when called out macaque team will not visit you in person unless requested to do so because they will be concentrating on moving the animals.

To report illegal feeding: 

Contact the police on (+350) 20072500 making sure they understand that you want to report a feeding incident and not that you wish the macaque team to be called out.

Monkey Damage

The Macaques are Wild. Therefore any damage they do cannot be claimed or sued against.  If you would like to know how to protect your property from monkey damage please see the Guide for Locals at the top of this page.

Educational Outings and Talks from Gibraltar’s Macaque Team

The team do educational talks for everyone from school children to University students and their lecturers.  Contact us for more information.


The Gibraltar Macaque Team brings over 50 years of experience and have been working with researchers from around the globe.  We always do our best to ensure your projects are successful. For more infomation on doing a research project/dissertation/thesis in Gibraltar then please see our testimonials and research center.

We also offer accommodation at Bruce’s Farm Field Station.

Films Crews and Documentary Makers

The team have worked with many journalists, television, radio and film crews from all around the world from Japan to Germany.

If you are interested in doing a piece on Gibraltar's wildlife please contact us.  We'll be happy to help you get the information you need and show you the best places to view the famous Rock Apes!

See our testimonials for examples.