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Swamp monkey baby is born at the zoo

Statement as issued Wednesday by the Fort Wayne Children's Zoo:

Swamp monkeys Brie (BREE) and Bangi (BAN-jee) are parents again! A new addition to the swamp monkey family was born on Thursday, November 1 at the Fort Wayne Children's Zoo.

The baby, whose gender is not yet known and has not been named, is the fifth baby for the prolific pair. The infant has plenty of older siblings to keep it company: older brother Anderson, age 3, and sisters Izzy, 2, and Luella, 1 are extremely curious about the new arrival. An older sister named Calvin is now living at the Fresno Chaffee Zoo.

As with any addition to a family, the dynamics of the swamp monkey group have shifted. "At first, Luella seemed upset that she couldn't get all of her mom's attention," said zoo keeper Erin Fairchild, "but she seems to have adjusted to the new baby."

For now, the baby clings to Brie's belly to nurse and nap. In a few weeks, the youngster should begin to interact with its brothers and sisters. By the time the zoo opens on April 20, the baby will be hopping, jumping, and swinging in the enclosure with its siblings!

Swamp monkeys are native to central Africa's forests, where they feed on fruits, leaves, and insects. As their name implies, swamp monkeys inhabit swampy areas and are good swimmers. They dive underwater to avoid predators.

The Fort Wayne Children's Zoo is closed for the season and will reopen on April 20, 2013.

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