The Greater Bushbaby Science Center has announced the birth of two baby Greater Bushbabies. One female Garnett’s Greater Galago was born on May 26, 2011 and one male Brown Greater Galago was born shortly after, June 2, 2011. They were named Chipo, which means “gift” in Shona, and Jenali, which means “mighty” in Swahili - and mark the first and second greater bushbabies born at the Center this year.
“Both babies and their parents are doing superbly,” reports facility director and primatologist Ann Stanley, who has been on staff with the Center since its opening in September of 2006. “We couldn’t be happier with their progress.”
“Healthy infant greater bushbabies weigh 40 – 50 grams at birth on average and both babies fell within that ideal weight range,” explains Stanley. “Today, at about one month of age, the female and male weigh 178 and 183 grams, respectively. They have already over tripled their birth weights in four weeks, so you can see how quickly these little babies grow.” As adults, the bushbabies can be expected to weigh up to 1 kilogram.
So what exactly is a Bushbaby? “They are not monkeys as many people mistakenly believe; Bushbabies are prosimian primates, so taxonomically they are closely related to monkeys but are considered to be more primitive,” explains Stanley.
The name Bushbaby does not come from their baby-like features, however. Galagos became known as Bushbabies because of their rhythmic high-pitched contact calls which sound much like the cry of a human infant.
Once grown, the two Bushbabies will be reintroduced to the Center’s larger established colonies.
The Greater Bushbaby Science Center is a worldwide consortium of entities participating in the study, documentation, preservation, and rehabilitation of greater bushbaby species.