Spider Monkeys

We have two species of Spider Monkey: Ateles belzebuth and Ateles chamek.

Ateles belzebuth

We currently have 15 Ateles Belzebuth, split into two troops, one led by Diego and the other by Moreno. When one troop reaches 15 this will be a full troop that we can potentially release. However, all of them are ex-pets and when an animal is used to human presence, it is extremely difficult to return it to the wild, since they would take any opportunity to get close to any human, seeing them as a source of food. We hope to build a monkey troop dedicated solely to their species, and free from human presence. Our rehabilitation plan for them involves gradually reducing human contact with the monkeys, until we reach a point of bare minimum contact. This would get the monkeys used to a setting closer to that which they would experience in the wild. Make sure to watch our upcoming Project creating a Spider Monkey Island!

Suzy and Diego are the oldest, and they arrived from a so-called “rescue center”. They were handled by tourists, and fed food meant for people. They were used to junk food, and even alcohol, which they stole from a nearby store — they know how to drink from a bottle, and how to open doors!

Joaquin was also a pet, being kept by a resident of a community near our Center, who learned of our mission, and realized that Joaquin could be a part of a family at RAREC. Thus, they decided to turn Joaquin in. He has integrated well to the troop.

Moreno, Azucena and Emma arrived next. They lived in another rescue center in Iquitos in semi-captivity, but the conditions of interaction with other species was causing incidents and endangered the lives of other smaller individuals. It was decided to send them to RAREC so that they could join an already armed troop and interact with their peers.

Gia, recently had an operation to amputate two fingers after she got them stuck in a net hammock and they couldn’t heal. After two months of monitoring and healing, she re-joined the troop and was welcomed again. We are monitoring her behaviour and whether she can function like normal while missing two fingers. Her development will tell us whether she is able to be released or if she will stay with us for life.

 ATELES CHAMEKS

We also have 5 Ateles Chameks, 2 females and 3 males. Chameks are noticeably different to Ateles Belzebuths because they are fully black rather than with a yellow belly. 

This troop is slowly forming but also needs 15 Chameks with a great relationship to be released. At the moment, Binks, who arrived in December 2020, leads the troop. It is also formed of Sam, Laura, Judy and Patrick.

Patrick

He arrived in December 2020, approximately 6 months old. He was rescued in a town 2 hours away by river. His captors were denounced for having him tied up at the door of their house. His tail had been amputated and his fingers dislocated a number of times, meaning his hand is now permanently deformed. Because of these problems, he is not releasable because he will not be able to keep up with the rest of his troop out in the wild as spider monkeys use their prehensile tail as a fifth limb. 

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