Spider monkey passes at Salisbury Zoo

The Salisbury Zoo has announced the death of its 39-year-old male black-handed spider monkey, “Benny.”

Zookeepers found him deceased in his exhibit last weekend. He was popular with Zoo visitors. 

Born Oct. 26, 1979, at Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo, the Salisbury Zoo acquired Benny in November 1990.

He sired one offspring, Amy, in 1994; she currently resides at the zoo.

The Salisbury Zoo has been exhibiting black-handed spider monkeys since the early 1970s and has a long history with spider monkey conservation.

Black-handed spider monkeys are threatened in the wild.

Black-handed spider monkeys are found in the tropical lowland rainforests from Mexico to South America. Spider monkeys live mostly in the upper to middle canopy of the forest.

Using their prehensile tails they can travel through trees as fast as humans can run on ground.

Benny was approaching the upper end of the life expectancy range for his species and was being monitored by soo staff. A post mortem exam was being conducted at John’s Hopkins University.

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