Any ideas? Calling on the public to name Fota Wildlife Park’s new baby spider monkey

A call for the public has been launched to help name an endangered baby spider monkey that was recently born at Cork’s Fota Wildlife Park.

Ota said the primate was born to mother Norma and father Pinky as part of a European Endangered Breeding (EEP) program and the park is asking the public to help name the baby.

The new baby spider monkey was born on March 4, 2022, but its gender is not yet known.

Mother Norma is eleven years old and came to Fota Wildlife Park in 2015 from Le Bioparc de Doué-la-Fontaine in France, while father Pinky, 10, was born in the park.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has listed the Colombian black spider monkey as critically endangered due to hunting, habitat destruction, and a long birth cycle. Females only give birth every two to three years.

Lead Ranger at Fota Teresa Power said: “We are delighted to announce the birth of an endangered animal. It helps us raise awareness of species loss in the wild and conservation work here at Fota. European wildlife parks and zoos operate cooperative breeding programs as a demographic and genetic backup for wild populations.

“We don’t yet know if the baby is a boy or a girl, but there are already two big sisters in the group, Guadalupe, born in 2017, and Blinky, born in 2020. The new baby is nibbling on fruit and veg and getting all around the recently modernized spider monkey enclosure more active.”

The spider monkeys have recently moved into their new purpose built home and have upgraded the outdoor living space which features an expanded island and a new moat and waterfall.

A subspecies native to Colombia and Panama, the Colombian black spider monkey has a black body, long limbs, and an extremely flexible tail with a hairless grasping tip that, like a human fingerprint, is unique to each animal.

The black spider monkey is the largest New World monkey and is found in humid forests up to 2,500 meters above sea level.

It is also a species of tree that spends its time high up in the canopy. It feeds primarily on fruit, although it also consumes leaves for protein and has a pot-bellied appearance due to its large stomach.

Fota Wildlife Park, part of the Zoological Society of Ireland, is set on 100 hectares on Fota Island, 10km east of Cork City. Fota Wildlife Park is a conservation charity and welcomes over 475,000 visitors a year, making it one of Ireland’s premier visitor attractions.

According to Fota, name suggestions can be submitted online here. Entries also have the chance to win a conservation annual pass,

The park said all visitors wishing to visit the new baby spider monkey must book their ticket in advance. Any ideas? Calling on the public to name Fota Wildlife Park’s new baby spider monkey

Fry Electronics Team

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