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Seven Orphaned Howler Monkeys Released

Lupe, Oto, Dylan, Jaimico, Summer, Esmeralda, and Yahaira are now living wild and free in the forest where they belong. After years of rehabilitation at our center, these amazing monkeys learned all the necessary skills needed to survive in the wild. They spent several weeks in our release enclosure getting acclimatized to their future home. Having spent so much time looking out into the forest, the monkeys were all very eager to explore outside. When the hatch was opened, the group was a little hesitant at first, but then quickly started playing together, thrilled with their new playground! 

Oto was the first to climb the entire length of the rope leading to the trees, followed by Esmeralda! Dylan, Lupe, Jaimico, and Oto climbed the highest into the trees while the others stayed a little closer to the enclosure. For several hours the group stayed close to the enclosure, climbing back into the safety of their temporary home and then back out again into the treetops. This is the type of behavior we expect during a soft release. We will keep the hatch at top of the enclosure open, and for several days, food will be provided inside the enclosure in case the monkeys need extra help during their first days of freedom. This will give the monkeys a little more time to adjust if they need it.

Meet the Monkeys!

Oto – Separated from Mother

Oto was only 3 weeks old when he fell from his mother’s back after she was attacked by an alpha. Poor Oto was left on the ground as his mother escaped and was then pecked at by hungry vultures. When he arrived at the Refuge, he had scratches and wounds all over his face and hands, but thanks to the medical treatment he received, he healed very quickly. Oto is the most demanding of all the monkeys in this troop and likes to be the center of attention. Oto is the youngest of the males in the troop.

Dylan – Mother Died from Illness

Dylan is the oldest in the troop and was rescued when he was about 1.5 years old. His mother died from an illness and Dylan stayed with her, losing track of his troop. He was too young to be alone in the jungle so he was sent to our center to grow up in our Orphaned Howler Rehabilitation Program. Dylan is the largest and strongest monkey in this troop and is currently the alpha of the troop, showing strong signs of dominance.

Lupe –  Mother Killed by Dogs

When she was only 3 months old Lupe was orphaned when her mother was attacked and killed by dogs. Thankfully, Lupe only has a few small scratches from the incident and quickly recovered from her minor injuries. Lupe has thrived in our care and has always been a very active and social monkey. Lupe has also always been the largest female in her troop making her the clear choice for alpha female! Lupe is now all grown up and ready to return to the forest with her new family made up of other orphans.

Jaimico – Mother Died

Jaimico was found clinging to his dead mother’s body. We do not know what killed his mother, but thankfully Jaimico showed no signs of serious injury or illness.  He was 4 months old at the time and needed special care from our dedicated staff. Jaimico has a funny personality and loves to smile and wrestle with his troop.  As a more submissive male, he gets along with everyone, and with his confidence, he could one day be the alpha of the group.

Summer – Found Alone

Summer was found by the side of the road when she was only 2 months old. We do not know what happened to her mother, but likely she was hit by a car. Summer had no injuries, but would not have survived in the wild on her own. Thankfully someone spotted her before she was injured or attacked by a predator and she was brought to the Refuge. Summer is a very gentle monkey and is the smallest in the group.

Yahaira – Mother Electrocuted

Yahaira was orphaned when her mother climbed onto uninsulated power distribution in Marbella. She was 5 months old at the time of the accident and could not survive on her own. Thankfully Yahaira did not have any burn injuries or internal damage which is quite common among howlers orphaned by electrocution. She has a very calm and passive personality and is Dylan’s favorite female – he’s always flirting with her.

Esmeralda – Electrocution Survivor!

Esmeralda’s mother was killed instantly when she climbed onto a high voltage transformer. Esmeralda, who was riding on her mother’s back at the time, sustained electrical burns to her face, tail, feet, back, and hands – with several fingers severely burned to the point that they needed to be amputated. This was a lot for an infant howler, who was only a few months old at the time, to endure. We did not think she would survive. We were thrilled to watch Esmeralda finally climb into the treetops after such a long and difficult rehabilitation.

Support our Work

Please help us keep our Orphaned Howler Rehabilitation Program going during these difficult times. We are currently not able to run our educational visits which are our main source of income for the past six months due to Covid-19. Only with your generous support will we be able to continue helping injured and orphaned wildlife. If you are in a position to do so, please make a donation today.