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Dudley Zoo welcomes new female arrival

By David Cosgrove | Dudley entertainment | Published:

Dudley Zoo has welcomed a new arrival – the first gelada baboon girl to be born at the venue.

The as-yet unnamed youngster is the first female arrival since the baboons moved in in 2015, as the other four babies born have all been boys.

Senior keeper Jodie Dryden said: “We’re over the moon to have a girl and finally break the all-boy chain.

“She’s thriving and mum, Tana, seems to be keeping her even closer than she did with her firstborn son, Ambo.”

The latest arrival was born on January 25, just five weeks after half-brother, Dendi.

Visitors are now being given the chance to choose her name.

Mum Tana with the newborn girl

Lower primate keepers have come up with their three favourite African inspired suggestions for the new little miss and they are being put to the vote on the zoo's Facebook page.

People can click ‘like’ for Kadida, ‘love’ for Tullu or ‘laughter’ for Amhara and votes will be counted up at the end of the week.

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The zoo has a total of five babies in its 'Baboons on the Bank' exhibit who have been born since it introduced the breeding group – Billie, Ambo, Gimbi, Dendi and the new little girl.

Father to all five youngsters is Ebano, while three mums are Tana, Addis and Jimma.

Gelada baboons are the last surviving species of grazing primate and known as shuffle-feeders, as they prefer to pluck grass while shuffling on their bottoms.

Gestation is usually around six months and mothers will carry the baby on their stomach for the first few weeks, before transferring it to their back.

The youngster will begin to gain more independence around five months old.

David Cosgrove

By David Cosgrove
Chief Reporter - @davidcosgrove_

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