“Lily, we aren’t in Oz anymore.” This conversation came hard one day as I explained to Lily why our neighbors might not be too keen on the idea of attracting beautiful wildlife flying monkeys to the neighborhood.
When we lived in Oz, flying monkeys were as common as a horse of a different color. On summer evenings, flying monkeys could be observed flying the skies; sometimes with determination in their wings, but more often than not, just frolicking about doing nose dives, relays, and various other antics. On evenings with a full moon, their silhouettes were particularly impressive.
Beautiful flying monkeys are very loyal wildlife. Once established in your wildlife habitat, if conditions are right, they will stay year round. It’s also possible to train flying monkeys to feed out of your hands. This takes some time to gain their confidence, but it’s very doable. The best approach I’ve found, is to wear a monkey disguise while putting out lettuce, aged fruit, or other veggies from the fridge. Each day, put the food a little closer to your home, so they eventually get use to your up-close presence.
By doing this for about about a month, I was able to have the flying monkeys feed from my hands. When we were in Oz, the flying monkeys were so tamed, my kids were able to dress the flying monkeys in costumes. They seemed to have a preference to a military style look with a bit of red.
When fellow wildlife gardener from Mr. McGregor’s Daugher visited, she was able to get close to the flying monkeys in just a week’s time.
When another friend, Layanee DeMerchant of Ledge and Gardens visited, she was so inspired by the flying monkeys, she was motivated to get her hands on anything monkey and sent me these coffee mugs.
Because of their fierce loyalty, if you are upset over someone and ask a flying monkey to intervene, they will. So be careful what you wish for. This can give your flying monkeys a bad rap. Need I remind you of the incident with Dorothy and her ruby slippers?
Mostly nocturnal, flying monkeys travel in packs. When attracting flying monkeys, you are more likely to have 20 flying monkeys than the occasional one stopping by. Preferring the tops of trees, flying monkeys have also adapted to open land, forests, and suburban neighborhoods.
Flying monkeys are omnivores, preferring aroids such as Dracunculus vulgaris, also known as a Voodoo lily or stink lily and the insects they attract, pollinators such as flies, wasps, and beetles. During the winter months when Voodoo lilies aren’t available, they will feed on dried grasses and hibernating insects.
Flying monkeys are cavity dwellers; however, they have adapted well due to their declining natural habitats and will also will make a nest from sticks and twigs.
One summer back in Oz, during mating season, a male flying monkey came into the house through an open window. If he wasn’t as scared as the rest of us, the fright of seeing a monkey flying throughout the house could have left a negative mark on our adventures of attracting beautiful wildlife flying monkeys. As such, it is recommended to keep your windows and doors closed during the late spring when they breed.
Zwats are natural predators to flying monkeys. So if you find you have a problem with too many flying monkeys and can’t find a service to help you relocate them, attracting Zwats to your wildlife habitat will help keep the beautiful flying monkey population in check.
Flying monkeys are so popular in the garden now, there is even garden art in their likeness. Do you have flying monkeys?
Helen Yoest is a garden writer, speaker and garden coach through her business Gardening with Confidence™.
Helen is the founder, publisher and editor of:
Tarheel Gardening – your online resource for North Carolina gardening enthusiasts.