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Guyanese monkeys for Jamaica zoo

Kenneth Benjamin/ Jamaica Gleaner photo)

(JAMAICA GLEANER).-Children may be in for a surprise when they visit the Hope Zoo this weekend, as 10 squirrel monkeys arrived on the island from Guyana on Thursday.

Kenneth Benjamin, executive chairman of the Guardsman Group, announced this at the Rotary Club of Kingston’s weekly luncheon which was staged at the Treehouse at Hope Zoo in St Andrew.

Benjamin, who was the guest speaker, said the monkeys would arrive at the zoo as early as Saturday or Sunday, after going through the required procedures. He also stated that four snakes and six toucans had also arrived on the island. “I want this to be one of the finest small zoos in the world. We have come a long way in the past two years and we wish to build upon this,” he said.

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“When you think that maybe 80 per cent of our children have never travelled and they will never get to see what a lion looks like in person, they probably see them on TV, but when you see a real animal in front of you, there is so much more appreciation. This is what I want to bring to the children of Jamaica,” Benjamin added.

He also noted that a female lion had been identified, and if the funding is secured, she would be on the island within the next three months.