A More Natural Habitat for Cape May County Zoo Primates

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Primate Point debuts at the Cape May County Zoo. Primate Point debuts at the Cape May County Zoo.

Usually at this time of year, the staffers at the Cape May County Park & Zoo are decking the halls for the holiday season.

But as of Wednesday, November 29th, holiday decor is not the only new thing for visitors to enjoy.

“We are opening our new primate corner, Primate Point," said E. Marie Hayes, a Cape May County Freeholder that oversees the zoo. "It was a lot of work, with donations coming in, [and] we said the need was here to put it out here so people can see them in what is really like a [true] environment to them.”

As soon as you enter the zoo you can’t miss Primate Point. The new space serves as a more natural habitat for the Black Howler Monkeys and DeBrazza Monkeys that call the zoo home.

Primate Point Photo Opening Cape May Zoo “The old exhibit was pretty old," said Kim Simpkins, senior primate keeper at Cape May County Park & Zoo. "We just needed to replace it. It needed a lot of work.”

“I think it was a cramped space that they were in, and it wasn’t something that was conducive to what they’re normally used to it,” said Hayes.

Now it’s very open, plus you get to see the animals in different habitats.

Primate Point will have plenty of room for visitors to see the monkeys.

“There [are] five rooms inside, which is really nice because we can rotate everybody around a lot," said Simpkins. "Two of them have nice, big windows so the public can see them year-round and then we have three big outside yards.”

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Those two 12-foot by 7-foot windows take viewing the monkeys to another level for the hundreds of thousands of people that come through the gates at the zoo each year.

“Before, it was a smaller viewing area and people really had to crowd around," said Hayes. "Now it’s very open, plus ... you get to see [the animals] in different habitats."

And the animals in the exhibit are already taking to their new home.

“We thought they’d be afraid of it, but they’ve all come out and have been really excited about all the new stuff so yeah it’s been great,” said Simpkins.

The staff says everyone should be on the lookout for more exciting announcements regarding the future of Primate Point.

Read: Cape May County Zoo Celebrates Fifth Accreditation

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