A Face Only A Mandrill Could Love

Jesse, a male of this large monkey species, turned 15 Wednesday, and partied with two lady friends on blueberries and other treats.


Bay City News -- One of the San Francisco Zoo's most colorful primates celebrated his 15th birthday Wednesday.

Jesse, the zoo's only male mandrill, enjoyed a special treat of pineapples and blueberries this morning along with the zoo's two female mandrills, Lulu and Cleo.

"For them, that's like having a birthday cake -- it's not something they get every day," said Corinne MacDonald, curator of the zoo's primate and carnivore exhibits.

Mandrills are an African monkey species that are considered vulnerable due to hunting and habitat loss. Zoo officials say the species has declined by more than 30 percent over the last 30 years.

One of the largest monkeys on earth, mandrills are socially dynamic primates known for their brightly hued blue and red faces, MacDonald said.

Visitors can see these majestic monkeys at the mandrill exhibit near the zoo's Primate Discovery Center.

No gifts, please.


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