Lincoln Park Zoo Welcomes Newborn Goeldi’s Monkey

Lincoln Park Zoo's newborn Goeldi's monkey is barely visible as it clings to its mother's neck. (Julia Fuller / Lincoln Park Zoo) Lincoln Park Zoo's newborn Goeldi's monkey is barely visible as it clings to its mother's neck. (Julia Fuller / Lincoln Park Zoo)

You’ll need to look closely to spot Lincoln Park Zoo’s new baby monkey.

The infant Goeldi’s monkey, born Oct. 15 to first-time parents, is barely visible as it clings to its mother’s neck.

“They’re really small when they’re born, so until they start getting up and moving around freely, we can’t determine the sex,” said Jill Moyse, the zoo’s curator of primates. “It just started last week moving around and moving its head around. Unless you knew to look, a visitor wouldn’t even know that there’s a baby there.”

Goeldi’s monkeys, also known as callimicos, are native to the upper Amazon basin of Bolivia, Brazil and Peru. They live near the ground and typically eat fruit and insects, Moyse said.

The zoo’s newest monkey will continue clinging to its mother, Zsazsa, for about five weeks, Moyse said.

(Chris Bijalba / Lincoln Park Zoo)(Chris Bijalba / Lincoln Park Zoo)

“They’re on their mom for a while, and then the dad will actually start carrying them around, too,” she said, adding that the newborn’s father, Butters, is getting ready to help out. “We have seen him go over and get into position, but we haven’t seen the baby riding on dad yet. But that doesn’t mean to say that hasn’t happened.”

The three Goeldi’s monkeys share an exhibit with the zoo’s howler monkeys – the two species get along because they come from the same region, Moyse said. There are a total of nine monkey species in the zoo’s Helen Brach Primate House.

Destruction of the Amazon forest threatens the survival of Goeldi’s monkeys, according to the zoo, which participates in an international conservation effort to preserve the species.

As part of the Goeldi’s Monkey Species Survival Plan, Zsazsa and Butters are scheduled to mate again. Once they do, the newborn monkey will actually help carry and raise its younger brother or sister, Moyse said.

Contact Alex Ruppenthal: @arupp aruppenthal@wttw.com | (773) 509-5623


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