Detroit Zoo welcomes baby snow monkey - and it's just so cute

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The Detroit Zoo has a welcomed a new animal to its ranks - and it's a cute one.

After 173 days of gestation a Japanese Macaque has been born, bringing the troop's count up to nine. Born to parents Carmen and Haru, the adorable red-faced primate took its first breaths Tuesday, April 23.

Issued through a press release, Chief Life Sciences Officer Scott Carter said it's the female's first baby.

"Mom and baby are doing well," Carter said. "Carmen is a first-time mom, but she's attentive and doing everything she should. The baby is fully furred and alert and can sometimes be seen clearly when Carmen puts her down in the grass for brief periods."

The gender and weight of the newborn are currently unknown as zoo officials haven't had a chance to get a close look - although they suspect it's a girl.

Typically snow monkeys, native to Japan are born weighing 1.5 pounds. Adult males weight up to 30 pounds and females can reach 22 pounds.

The birth is the first new snow monkey to be born at DZS in 13 years. Her parents were considered genetically compatible, making the newborn the product of a monkey-arranged marriage. 

Despite the success in the enclosure, the Japanese Macaque isn't doing as well on the outside. The old world monkey's habitat continues to disappear as its converted for human use. 

Other fun facts about the Japanese Macaque include:

  • It's the most northern-living primate in the world
  • They have a social hierarchy among their troops
  • Their diet includes fruits, berries, seeds and small animals
  • They were the first nonhuman primate species where learned behaviors were observed
  • They enjoy hot baths