So far this year, Blank Park Zoo in Des Moines has welcomed 12 new babies, including 2 camels, 1 black rhino, 2 wallabies, 1 giraffe, 2 addax, a desert antelope, and 3 elands. Their newest addition to that family of babies is a newborn Japanese macaque, also known as a snow monkey.
During this River to River conversation, zookeeper Val Hautekeete talks with host Ben Kieffer.
"These monkeys came from Japan. They live in troupes of over 100 in the wild and there was a split among the population in the 1970s. One troupe went into the mountains, and one troupe went down the mountain and began to be problem for a village," she explains. "The villagers in Japan wanted to kill them, but a U.S. researcher and a Japanese researcher got together and rounded up all of the monkeys and sent them to a wildlife preserve in Texas. They started to become a problem there, and they started looking for homes for some of them in the late 1980s. That's how we came to house them at the zoo."
The new snow monkey does not yet have a name, but she is the daughter of a 5 year old macaque named Miya.