Mon­key busi­ness at the zoo

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - NEWS - Kaylee Martin

VIS­I­TORS to Perth Zoo th­ese hol­i­days will be among the first to ex­plore new precinct Ama­zo­nia, home to a num­ber of an­i­mals from the South Amer­i­can Ama­zon.

The newly re­fur­bished area houses six in­quis­i­tive brown-nosed coatis, a breed­ing pair of golden lion tamarins and two cheeky Bo­li­vian squir­rel mon­keys.

Perth Zoo su­per­vi­sor of zo­ol­ogy Holly Thomp­son said the re­vamped precinct gave vis­i­tors the op­por­tu­nity to get up close and learn more about the species from that area.

“The Ama­zon is the world’s largest rain­for­est and home to some re­mark­able wildlife,” she said.

“It’s been a busy start to the year mov­ing the an­i­mals in; so far they’re all en­joy­ing climb­ing through the trees.”

The six male coatis ar­rived at the zoo from Mel­bourne Zoo last year and were hid­den be­hind the scenes un­til ren­o­va­tions were com­pleted.

“The boys pro­vide end­less en­joy­ment, they’re very mis­chievous and in­tel­li­gent, and we were even able to train them to into trans­port boxes for the move, which made it a stress-free ex­pe­ri­ence,” Ms Thomp­son said.

Perth Zoo’s res­i­dent bach­e­lor Bo­li­vian squir­rel mon­keys Marvin and Kyle also call the Ama­zo­nia precinct home.

Pic­tures: Matt Jelonek

“You will prob­a­bly hear Marvin and Kyle be­fore see­ing them as they chirp and cluck in search of in­sects,” Ms Thomp­son said.

Join­ing the boys in the precinct are two golden lion tamarins from Mel­bourne Zoo, eight-year-old male Ovo and six-year-old fe­male Lyra.

“We def­i­nitely hope Ovo and Lyra pro­duce ba­bies and

d448611 con­trib­ute to the global pop­u­la­tion; it’s all about pro­vid­ing a safety-net against ex­tinc­tion,” she said.

Perth Zoo is com­mit­ted to the con­ser­va­tion of an­i­mals from South Amer­ica. This in­cludes be­ing in­volved in breed­ing pro­grams and ed­u­cat­ing vis­i­tors about the il­le­gal trade in wildlife, which has af­fected an­i­mals like the Bo­li­vian squir­rel mon­key.

The golden lion tamarins.

Brown-nosed coati.

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