The Greenville Zoo announced today that the baby siamang born on January 6 to parents, Oscar and Ella, is a male. The baby is the pair’s second offspring, providing George, their two-year-old, with a baby brother. According to zoo director Jeff Bullock, while the zoo staff originally planned to hold a naming contest, they have decided to name the baby Arthur, Jr. (AJ) in honor of his uncle, Arthur, whose birthday he shares.
Arthur, who was born in 1994, was Oscar’s younger brother. The brothers were born and raised at the Greenville Zoo and had never been apart until 2014 when the Gibbon Species Survival Plan recommended that Arthur be transferred to the Lee Richardson Zoo in Garden City, Kansas to be paired with a female. His new mate turned out to be Ella’s daughter, Suki.
Arthur recently passed away, so as a way to celebrate AJ’s birth and remember Arthur, the Greenville Zoo is asking zoo supporters to consider making a donation in the siamangs’ name to the Huro Programme. Established in 2009, the Huro Programme is the only conservation organization fully dedicated to the conservation of the Western Hoolock gibbon (ranked among the most endangered primate species in the world) in Northeast India and runs the Sonja Wildlife Rescue Center in Meghalaya for the rescue, rehabilitation and reintroduction of Western Hoolock gibbons. Donations can be made online and all the money raised will go into the zoo’s conservation fund to be transferred to the Huro Programme at the end of June.