Fred (baboon)

Fred (died March 2011) was a baboon from Cape Town, South Africa. He came to international attention as the leader of a baboon gang which developed a reputation for raiding cars, assaulting and interfering with tourists, and stealing food. This led to Fred being labelled as aggressive by authorities. He was captured in 2011, and euthanised soon afterwards. Fred was pursued by photographers and police for at least three years. During one attack in 2010, the baboon was reported to have caused injuries to three people while searching for food in Cape Town. Two of the wounded received medical attention after the attack. When monitors were mobilised to disrupt Fred's activities the baboon initiated a violent campaign against these too. Human negligence and "misguided efforts" were found to have led to Fred's "demise" – "Because people want to love, laugh at and be entertained by baboons, they start a cycle of events that can lead to tragedy, as in the case of this baboon", the city said, adding "He targets cars with bags and visible food, but it is his ability to open closed car doors that surprised everyone". The decision to have him euthanised was not taken lightly and not without extensive discussions between all role-players involved. This baboon's aggression levels had recently escalated to the point where the safety of tourists, motorists and other travellers along the road past Smitswinkel Bay was being threatened. – statement released by Cape Town's Baboon Operational Group. However, not all local residents agreed with the death sentence. Documentary filmmaker Joss Lean filmed Fred's capture before following the vehicle in which the baboon was imprisoned amid efforts to have him released. The Baboon Matters organisation also attempted unsuccessfully to intervene on Fred's behalf. Fred features in the British television programme Baboons with Bill Bailey and an episode of Inside Nature's Giants, in which his dissection took place. With X-Ray and dissection, Fred was shown to have numerous shotgun pellets throughout his body. Cape Town (Afrikaans: Kaapstad [?kpst?t]; Xhosa: iKapa) is the second-most populous city in South Africa after Johannesburg, and the provincial capital and primate city of the Western Cape. As the seat of the National Parliament, it is also the legislative capital of the country. It forms part of the City of Cape Town metropolitan municipality. The city is famous for its harbour as well as its natural setting in the Cape floral kingdom, including such well-known landmarks as Table Mountain and Cape Point. Cape Town is also Africa's most popular tourist destination. Located on the shore of Table Bay, Cape Town was originally developed by the Dutch East India Company as a victualling (supply) station for Dutch ships sailing to Eastern Africa, India, and the Far East. Jan van Riebeeck's arrival on 6 April 1652 established the first permanent European settlement in South Africa. Cape Town quickly outgrew its original purpose as the first European outpost at the Castle of Good Hope, becoming the economic and cultural hub of the Cape Colony. Until the Witwatersrand Gold Rush and the development of Johannesburg, Cape Town was the largest city in South Africa. Today it is one of the most multicultural cities in the world, reflecting its role as a major destination for immigrants and expatriates to South Africa. As of 2011 the metropolitan region had an estimated population of 3.74 million. The city was named the World Design Capital for 2014 by the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design