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Photo: Rick Stevens

Black-handed Spider Monkey baby, Isadora, with mother Jai

The first Black-handed Spider Monkey baby to be born at the Zoo in 16 years received a very warm welcome when she arrived on 9 October 2017! Keepers have recently announced a fitting name for the special baby.

‘Isadora’ meaning ‘gift’ or ‘gifted’ is a name commonly used in the Spanish language. The Spanish name refers to the geographic origin of Black-handed Spider Monkeys, which are found in Mexico and throughout Central America, where Spanish is a primary language. They are classified as Endangered, with habitat loss being the primary cause of their decline.

First time mother, Jai, is one of two females transferred to the Zoo from Auckland in 2015. She has been taking excellent care of Isadora, who clings tightly to her mother’s stomach and side. Isadora will remain dependent on her mother until around three years of age.

There are three sub-species of Black-handed Spider Monkeys residing on Primate Island at the Zoo, with colours ranging from dark brown to lighter blonde. The best time to see the Spider Monkeys is at the Spider Monkey feed at 12.50pm daily.

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