Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Monkey Trouble!


Usually my job as a zoo keeper is pretty mundane: scrubbing food dishes, chopping vegetables and fruit, raking up hay, getting pooped on, etc. Of course, there is always the chance that something might bite me, but in fact I get along with my animal charges pretty well so that seldom happens. Once in a while though, we have a real challenge. 




Now is one of those times. One of 
our squirrel monkeys gave birth unexpectedly to a tiny female. Unfortunately, she rejected the baby. We tried to foster the infant with another female, but she wasn't able to produce any milk. So now it's our turn to play mom! 

It isn't easy. She needs to eat every couple of hours, day and night. She needs a specialized formula, and must have a stuffed animal to cling to at all times because in the wild, squirrel monkeys carry their infants at all times. The babies continue to nurse for 6 months and stay with their mothers for a year. So raising a baby monkeys is no easy task! 



25 comments:

  1. oOh this is so adorable. I love it's little ears! great post!

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  2. That is SO sweet! What a precious little baby!

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  3. omgosh! how sweet is this little one! and so wonderful of you to take this on! no easy task i can imagine! but major kudos to you for all you do!

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  4. You do have your hands full here, and she is adorable!

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  5. I want one! I was surprised you weren't trying to fool the little sweetie with a plush monkey :)

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  6. Thanks for all the good wishes everyone! She had a little cold yesterday, but is all better today!

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  7. What a sweet little one. Way to go, taking such good care of her like that. Must be exhausting.

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  8. Exhausting only just begins to cover it! Whew! :)

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  9. Great pictures.Keeps you busy.Been keeping up with you on Twitter.Am giving you the Lovely Blog Award tomorrow...

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  10. Wow , how very sweet , you have the most wonderful job !

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  11. Here I would think a job as a zookeeper is exciting. But yeah, I would imagine it's lots of repetative stuff, just like any job has.

    That monkey is so sweet!

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  12. Thanks everyone! Yes, it can become a rut, until something like this little gal shows up!

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  13. best wishes with her! what formula are you feeding? is she staying with you? how many squirrels do you have in your clan? we have one due in about 2 weeks... which is unusually early... our two breeding females usually only birth in september or october! (this is earshotvintage from etsy by the way!)

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  14. Hi Jamie! We are giving her a low iron baby formula mixed with some baby food and a little ground up sq. monkey chow. And she is staying with us, 24/7, although mostly with another keeper. Can you believe we have almost 50 total? They are supposed to be on birth control, but... And for us the birthing season was May - that's SoCal for you! One other gave birth, but she is a good mama and seemed to know what to do.

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  15. Oh my gosh that is just about one of the cutest little things I've ever seen! You are doing wonderful work.
    Blessings

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  16. Thanks! She is getting so big now, and so rambunctious! I'll have to post more photos soon.

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  17. How's she doing? nice and healthy I hope?

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  18. She's doing great now! Eating some solid food already, and SO playful!

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  19. awe - bless your heart! So tiny - thankfully she is in good hands :) Good to hear she is playful! :) Wish I could meet her :D

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  20. Wow. I love these insights into the zoo! squirrel monkeys are adorable.

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