Posted In Visitors | 31st January 2024

Endangered Siamang Gibbon Baby Born & Sulawesi Crested Macaques Return

Dublin Zoo is celebrating the birth of a rare baby siamang gibbon, born overnight on the 2nd of December.

The new arrival marks an important milestone in Dublin Zoo’s conservation efforts, as parents Cahaya (14) and Luca (22) are genetically important to the European Endangered species programme.

The sex of the baby is still unknown, and it will be another few weeks before Dublin Zookeepers have the opportunity to get a closer look to determine this. The little siamang is clinging to its mother tightly and keepers have observed it suckling healthily from Cahaya.

Cahaya arrived at Dublin Zoo in 2014 and Luca in 2018. They forged a strong connection and have proven themselves to be wonderful parents for the new arrival. Cahaya is a confident mother, whilst quieter Luca has stayed close to her in his role as a protective father and partner.

Siamang gibbon babies are born hairless except for a small patch of black hair on top of their head. For this reason, mother and baby remained in their heated indoor habitat since birth to protect the baby from the cold winter temperatures. The keepers are confident that the infant is now strong enough to be introduced to the outdoor habitat which the gibbons share with the Bornean orangutans.

Sulawesi Crested Macaques are Back!

Dublin Zoo is also delighted to announce that the troop of Sulawesi crested macaques have returned to their newly refurbished island habitat. The animal care team enhanced their habitat so it is more reflective of the macaques natural environment in the wild, providing them with high stimulating structures, large communal grooming areas, a brand-new low-level bridge for the troop to connect between the two islands and communal feeding areas to allow for younglings to learn a wide range of social skills from their elders.

Monkey Madness Weekend

To celebrate the birth of the siamang gibbon baby and the return of the macaques, Dublin Zoo is inviting visitors to join them for a Monkey Madness weekend this bank holiday weekend.

On Saturday 3rd, Sunday 4th and Monday, 5th February, young visitors can have fun following the monkey trail and guess the clues. There will also be special keeper talks for visitors keen to learn more about the siamang gibbons and Sulawesi crested macaques.

To book your tickets, click here.

Ciaran McMahon, Team Leader at Dublin Zoo said:

“Dublin Zoo is overjoyed to announce the arrival of a siamang gibbon baby. Cahaya and Luca have been showing excellent parenting skills as they raise the infant, and it has been wonderful to see a strong bond growing between Cahaya and her new baby. This birth is also very special to the Dublin Zoo team, as it is an important step in our conservation of the siamang gibbon species, currently listed as Endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.

“It has been a busy week for us, as the Sulawesi crested macaques are getting to experience their exciting newly enhanced island habitat, which was a true labour of love for the animal care team. We have been watching the macaques enjoying and exploring the new elements in their habitat such as the new feeding and resting areas that allow infants and younger animals to learn social skills from their elders.

“We are excited for visitors to join us this bank holiday weekend to see Cahaya and Luca’s newborn, as well as the newly refurbished macaques’ habitat!”

Visitors to Dublin Zoo can visit the siamang gibbons and Sulawesi crested macaques at their habitat in Asian Forests. To plan your visit to Dublin Zoo, click here.