Critically endangered monkey born at British zoo

A rare monkey has been born at Chester Zoo, England, giving the critically endangered Sulawesi crested macaque species a much needed boost.

The British zoo captured video of the tiny female, named Amidala, last Friday (March 3), showing the little one cradled in her mother's arms and surrounded by fellow monkeys in the zoo enclosure.

Born to mother Lisa and father Mamassa on January 14, Amidala is Chester Zoo's eighteenth resident Sulawesi crested macaque.

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Sulawesi crested macaque -- monkey species
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Sulawesi crested macaque -- monkey species

Kema, the baby Sulawesi crested macaque looks out from her keepers arms July 14. The tiny endangered monkey, one of the many animals to star in the new TV Documentary "Zoo", was abandoned by her mother at birth and requires feeding every four hours by the primate keepers at London Zoo. 

(Reuters Photographer / Reuters)

Two Sulawesi crested macaque, or black apes enjoy a frozen treat on a summer's day at Ramat Gan Safari near Tel Aviv July 12, 2012.

(REUTERS/Nir Elias)

Keith Lloyd, Senior Keeper of the Apes at London Zoo gives a big hug to Kema, the baby Sulawesi crested macaque July 14. The tiny endangered monkey, one of the many animals to star in the new TV Documentary "Zoo", was abandoned by her mother at birth and requires feeding every four hours by the primate keepers at London Zoo. 

(Reuters Photographer / Reuters)

Sulawesi Crested Macaque

(stefbennett via Getty Images)

Keith Lloyd, Senior Keeper of the Apes at London Zoo, holds onto Kema, the baby Sulawesi crested macaque July 14. The tiny endangered monkey, one of the many animals to star in the new TV Documentary "Zoo", was abandoned by her mother at birth and requires feeding every four hours by the primate keepers at London Zoo. 

(Reuters Photographer / Reuters)

Nachi (R), a Sulawesi crested macaque or black ape, is seen next to her two-week-old baby Nina in their enclosure at the Ramat Gan Safari park, an open-air zoo near Tel Aviv October 31, 2012. The Sulawesi crested macaques originate from southeast Asia where they are being hunted and their habitats are destroyed, a statement from the safari park said.

(REUTERS/Nir Elias)

Sulawesi Crested Macaque

(carloscardetas via Getty Images)

Nina, a two-week-old baby Sulawesi crested macaque, or black ape, is seen at the Ramat Gan Safari park, an open-air zoo near Tel Aviv October 31, 2012. The Sulawesi crested macaques originate from southeast Asia where they are being hunted and their habitats are destroyed, a statement from the safari park said.

(REUTERS/Nir Elias)

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She is "a welcome boost to the European endangered species breeding programme that is working to protect the charismatic monkeys", Chester Zoo told Reuters.

Native to the island of Sulawesi in Indonesia, the Sulawesi crested macaques are listed as critically endangered by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

Factors such as habitat loss and illegal wildlife trade have led to a continuous decrease in the species numbers with only 5,000 individuals estimated to remain, the zoo said.

According to the zoo the 'species wild number is believed to have plummeted by around 80% in the last 30 years'.


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