Say a warm welcome to Animal Kingdom’s newest inhabitant: a recently-born baby mandrill. Dr. Mark Penning, the Vice President of Animals, Science, and Environment for Walt Disney Parks and Resorts announced the birth over this past weekend. Mommy mandrill, Scarlett, had just given birth as Animal Kingdom’s Animal Care Team arrived to work on Saturday. She and the baby are doing well.
As this past week was Animal Care Appreciation Week, it seems fitting that the littlest mandrill should make its appearance at this time. Walt Disney World and The Walt Disney Company have made efforts to show environmental concern and wildlife conservation efforts to give back to nature. Mandrills in particular have been a vulnerable population due to poaching and deforestation. Thankfully, although Scarlett and her baby are far from their native home in the equatorial African rainforests, they have a safe and beautiful home at Animal Kingdom.
The Disney Conservation Fund is committed to helping more mandrills in need. Since 1995 they have donated more than $6.5 million to support the conservation of primates in 29 countries. Something to consider the next time you’re asked if you’d like to round up at the merchandise shops in Animal Kingdom!
Although we do not yet know the sex or physical statistics on baby mandrill, as the care team is respecting the bonding period between mother and child, it is already stealing hearts everywhere! Catch baby hugging mommy Scarlett’s tummy on your next trip to the Kilimanjaro Safaris.
Photos courtesy of Disney