Jodie reunites with Tambo!

We’ve welcomed a new critically endangered male Sulawesi crested macaque to DZG, who has a special place in the heart of Lower Primates Senior Keeper, Jodie Dryden.

As Jodie was five year-old Tambo’s former keeper at Drusillas Park in East Sussex, where she helped care for him from birth. (pictured above!)

Jodie said: “I returned to DZG in 2015 and I’m so pleased to get Tambo back again as it was watching him grow up which originally ignited my passion for the species.

“And I’m quite proud that of all the zoos the studbook keepers could have chosen to send him, they’ve sent him to DZG.”

Tambo has joined our group as part of a European breeding programme and keepers are hopeful he’ll soon breed with our females.

Jodie, who is also the UK Regional Co-ordinator at Selamatkan Yaki – a Sulawesi crested macaque conservation, research and education project in Indonesia, added: “He seems to have settled in straight away and we’ve already spotted him getting friendly with the ladies!

“He’s also been grooming Stan, the other male in the group, which is really positive behaviour in primate species, as they use that as an acceptance.”

And after allowing him to settle indoors for a few days, Tambo’s been enjoying exploring his new hilly outdoor enclosure, with the rest of the new-look group, which includes females Jasmine and Sophie and two year-old Summer.

Jodie added: “In his former enclosure there wasn’t as much space as ours and no trees to climb, so he went straight up the large ash tree and started to munch on the browse and we’ve heard him make his territorial call, which is great news for us as it means he feels at home.”

Listed as critically endangered on the IUCN Red List, the species has faced a reduction in numbers by 90 per cent over the last three decades, threatened by extensive habitat loss due to farming and deforestation, as well as the illegal bush meat trade and the pet trade.