Dallas Morning News- Police believe two monkeys were taken from their enclosure at the Dallas Zoo on Monday morning.

Zoo spokeswoman Kari Streiber said when staff discovered two emperor tamarin monkeys were missing, it was immediately “clear the habitat had been intentionally compromised.” According to police, the habitat had been cut.

Streiber said since the monkeys — which would be expected to “stay close to home” in untampered circumstances — were still unaccounted for as of 3:50 p.m., police “have reason to believe the tamarins were taken.”

The investigation comes after an unprecedented string of events at the Dallas Zoo, including another missing animal, additional torn enclosures and an unusual death.

On Jan. 13, a 4-year-old clouded leopard named Nova had a day of social media fame when the zoo announced she had escaped from her enclosure. After search involving infrared drones, a “code blue” and Dallas police’s SWAT team, she was found on-site and unharmed.

The day after Nova escaped, officials revealed a similar cut was found on an enclosure of langur monkeys, but they said all of the langurs were in their habitat and accounted for.

About a week after the habitat vandalisms, a 35-year-old endangered vulture was found dead, and zoo staff quickly deemed the cause “unusual.” The bird, named Pin, was one of four lappet-faced vultures at the zoo. He had been at the Dallas Zoo for 33 years.

At first, officials only said that Pin’s death did not appear to be from natural causes. But after the zoo’s veterinary team conducted a necropsy — or an animal autopsy — they said the bird was found with a “wound.”

Over the past couple of weeks, a clouded leopard, a vulture, and now two emperor tamarins have been stolen. 

This story just unlocked a core memory in my mind, "Goodnight Gorilla" about the Gorilla that let everyone out of the zoo. 

This has to be straight up the work of some PETA activists or something. On the other hand, my anonymous source on the subject thought otherwise. 

So are we seeing a real-time exotic animal heist happening before our eyes? I mean, the Dallas Zoo has been hit numerous times over the past couple of weeks.

Let's check what the market value of a Cloud leopard alone is…

Clouded leopards are beautiful, medium-sized stocky cats that are beginning to become more available to private zoo owners. They are extremely expensive, with some having gone for around $20,000 

Tamarins that were stolen are about $13k for a male female pair

How much does a tamarin cost?

Male $6,000 Female $6,500. Its diet consists mainly of fruits, tree gum and insects.

I doubt they were going after the vulture but that is around a $35k haul they were looking at. Desperate times cause desperate measures. Smuggling exotics out the Dallas Zoo looks like the game plan.