Colobus baby begins life at Drusillas

Isis with her new baby
Isis with her new baby

DRUSILLAS Park is currently celebrating the arrival of the first baby colobus monkey to be bred at the zoo.

The youngster was born on November 18 and is looking extremely alert alongside parents, Elgon and Isis.

These large black and white monkeys live in family groups of up to 20 animals which often consist of one male, several females and their young.

They usually have one baby at a time, which is covered in woolly white fur when born and resembles a little lamb.

The sheepish new arrival is being closely guarded by his mother but will become increasingly confident over the coming weeks.

Nevertheless, it will take approximately six months for the mini monkey to develop the black and white colouration of the adults.

Colobus monkeys are highly arboreal, travelling through the treetops using their elongated arms and legs to spring from branch to branch.

A long mane hangs from their shoulders like a cape as they perform a hair-raising display of jumps and lunges.

The family group were re-homed to the zoo at the beginning of the year from Port Lympne Wild Animal Park in Kent.

In the wild, they inhabit the forests of central Africa where they are threatened by habitat destruction and hunting.

The colobus monkeys at Drusillas Park are part of a European breeding programme.