Awww! Baby baboons romp at Brooklyn’s Prospect Park Zoo
Moms hang onto them by their tails
Talk about cute: Two fuzzy young baboons can now be seen romping with their parents and other members of their baboon troop at the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Prospect Park Zoo.
Both boys, the baby Hamadryas baboons were born just weeks apart, and have the same dad: Bole, a 21-year-old male. The youngsters have two different moms, however. Hamadryas baboons, unlike most other types of baboons, form harems, with one male having several mates.
Rebecca, a 10-year-old female, was the first to give birth on August 9, followed by Kaia, also 10 years old, who gave birth on September 26.
Right after they were born, the babies rode under their mothers’ bellies for a while, before switching to riding them bareback.
Now, the moms keep tabs on their babies by hanging onto their tails.
The older of the two youngsters is “proving to be independent for his age and has started to explore his surroundings on his own,” the zoo says. “The younger infant is still nursing but will become more adventurous in the coming weeks.”
Zoo spokesperson Barbara Russo said the babies haven’t been named yet.
Hamadryas baboons are native to northeastern Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. They are large, ground-dwelling primates that are found in rocky areas and cliffs, which the zoo has recreated in the outdoor portion of the exhibit.
They live in troops that typically include one dominant male and many females. They are highly social animals and spend much of their time grooming one another, a behavior that maintains social bonds within the troop.
The baboons stay outside in the cold weather, but have access to their indoor facilities as well. “The baboons acclimate to the changing seasons,” Russo said.
Their arrival marks the first time since 2010, and the second time in nine years, that Hamadryas baboons were born at the Prospect Park Zoo.
The Hamadryas baboon exhibit is located in the zoo’s Animal Lifestyles building along with tamarin monkeys, piranhas, and Pallas cats. Prospect Park Zoo is located at 450 Flatbush Avenue in Prospect Park, Brooklyn. For further information, call 718-399-7339 or visit www.prospectparkzoo.com
The Wildlife Conservation Society protects many primate species throughout Africa by saving their habitats and working to curb illegal hunting and poaching. To donate, visit wcs.org
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