Valentine’s Day draws closer, so does the love at Staffordshire’s Drayton Manor Park between Columbian Spider Monkeys, Lizzie and Snarfy, as they anticipate the arrival of their bundle of joy.
With three female Spider Monkeys at Drayton Manor Zoo it was Lizzie that caught Snarfy’s eye and as they say, the rest is history.
Lizzie and Snarfy are a subspecies of Spider Monkeys that originate from Panama and Columbia and are listed as critically endangered. It is estimated that more than an 80% population decline has occurred over the past 45 years (based on a generation time of 15 years), due to extensive habitat loss caused by deforestation and hunting pressure.
Head of Zoo Operations at Drayton Manor Park, Chris Mitchell comments: ‘’I am delighted to announce that Lizzie is due to give birth within the next couple of months. Towards the end of last year we placed Snarfy with the females in the hope for a breeding pair. We were so excited to find out that this was successful after only a short period and that our much-loved Spider Monkeys were expecting a new addition to their family.
‘’Snarfy is so loving and attentive towards Lizzie, it’s been wonderful to watch their relationship develop. Sadly, they are critically endangered, which means protecting and caring for these charismatics monkeys is more important than ever before. We feel so privileged to be able to house a breeding group of these incredible monkeys at Drayton Manor Zoo.’’