Friday, April 26, 2013

Friday Facts - Spider Monkeys!

It's George!
On this beautiful spring-like Friday we bring you Spider Monkey facts!  George is a very vocal black spider monkey who loves to tell you all about his day.  After the cleaning is done, I look forward to one-on-one time with George, playing, grooming and “talking” with him.  He is particularly taken by blondes and will show is masculine side preening for the girls.  He is an elderly gentleman in his 40’s, although you would never know it by the way he swings around inside and outside! His favourite treats are dates, and peanut butter and banana sandwiches.   

Mr. Jenkins is a black-handed spider monkey who loves to play. His area is full of swings, tents, blankets, food puzzles and toys.  He LOVES celery chewing it, spreading the juice all over his chest while making happy sounds!  If Chili the llama comes too close for his liking while he is outdoors, Jenks will break into loud barking to protest.
Jenkins playing with a treat box

·        Spider monkeys are of the genus Ateles which contains seven species, such as Red-faced, White-fronted, and Colombian.  Sadly, Black-headed and Brown spider monkeys are listed as Endangered (EN) on the IUCN Red List.

·        Spider monkeys are “New World” monkeys found in Central America in the countries of Mexico, Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama.

·        Spider monkeys live in the canopy (arboreal), are active during the day (diurnal) and have a long prehensile (gripping) tail, sometimes called the fifth limb.

·        Spider monkey communities are “fission-fusion”, meaning that they split up into smaller subgroups to forage and sleep and then come together again.

·         Their diet includes fruit, leaves, flowers, nuts, seeds, insects, arachnids and eggs.

·        In the spider monkey world, the females choose their mates and will have a single baby every two to five years. The babies depend completely on their mothers for about ten weeks.  After that, the young ones will integrate into the troop, moving on their mother’s back for a year, and being dependent on their moms for three years.

·         A highly vocal primate, their vocabulary consists of barks, screeches, whinnying and howling.  You can always hear George and his neighbour Mr. Jenkins!

·        Spider monkeys are considered the most intelligent of the New World monkeys due to their brain size.  Jenkins and George are very clever and curious.

·         You can become a Foster Friend to George and Jenkins by visiting our website!
Jenkins and Pockets chatting outside

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