A baby Sulawesi Crested Macaque at the Chester Zoo is getting a lot of attention – from the other 15 members of the zoo’s Macaque troop, and from conservationists concerned with protecting this critically endangered species.
Born on May 29, the little Monkey clings to its mother Camilla as other Macaques gather around with intense interest in the baby. So far, Camilla is proving to be a good mother, even though this baby is her first.
Photo Credit: Chester Zoo
Found only on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, roughly 5,000 Sulawesi Crested Macaques remain in the island’s rain forests. Despite its threatened status, this species is still hunted regularly as a pest because it destroys crops in search of food. They are also hunted as bushmeat. Large-scale destruction of forests has dramatically reduced available habitat for these fruit- and leaf-eating Macaques.
Sulawesi Crested Macaques also live on some smaller, less-populated islands near Sulawesi, where they enjoy less pressure from humans. Six other macaque species live on Sulawesi, but this species is the most critically endangered.
This new baby is an important addition to European zoos' breeding program to preserve genetic diversity in endangered species.
See more photos of the baby Macaque below.