BROOKLYN – Two young Hamadryas baboons (Papio hamadryas) sharpen their social skills through roughhousing and play at the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Prospect Park Zoo. As adults, these skills are essential for protection of territory and the troop.
Bole, a 21-year-old male, is the father of both infants. Rebecca, a 10-year-old female, gave birth to one infant on August 9, followed by Kaia, also 10 years old, who had her baby on September 26.
The young baboons are both male and made their public debut in the fall.
Hamadryas baboons are native to northeastern Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. They are large, ground-dwelling primates that are found in rocky areas and cliffs. They live in troops that typically include one dominant male and many females. They are highly social and spend much of their time grooming one another, a behavior that maintains and reinforces social bonds within the troop.
The Hamadryas baboon exhibit is located in the zoo’s Animal Lifestyles building along with many other species including tamarins (small New World monkeys) and Pallas cats. The babies are currently on exhibit with the rest of the troop.
The Wildlife Conservation Society protects many primate species throughout Africa by saving their habitats and working to curb illegal hunting and poaching. WCS operates more than 500 conservation projects in more than 65 countries and four oceans.