ZooLex Logonull.gifa Service of WAZAnull.gif
Sponsored by:null.gifnull.gif
31.gif
Exhibit
AboutGalleryServiceFirmsFunResearch
null.gif
null.gifLOCATIONKEY WORDSANIMALSAWARDSnull.gifDESCRIPTIONSIZECOSTSOPENING DATEnull.gifDESIGNCONSTRUCTIONLOCAL CONDITIONSPLANTSnull.gifFEATURES ANIMALSFEATURES KEEPERSFEATURES VISITORSINTERPRETATIONnull.gifRESEARCHMANAGEMENTCONSERVATIONLOCAL RESOURCESnull.gif
 
 
zoologo.gif   

Stichting Apenheul

Amazonia - Spider Monkeys and Capybaras

Suzan Megens (author for Stichting Apenheul)
Monika Fiby (editor for ZooLex)
Published 2009-2-8
español

 

UP LOCATION:

Postbus 97, 7300 AB Apeldoorn, Netherlands
Phone: +31-55-57 57 00
Fax: +31-55-57 57 01
URL: http://www.apenheul.nl


UP KEY WORDS:

Amazonia, capybara, climbing structure, island, mixed exhibit, spider monkey


UP ANIMALS:

Family:Species:Common Name:Capacity:
AtelinaeAteles fusciceps robustusBrown-headed spider monkey1.3.2
AtelinaeAteles paniscus (hybrid)Red-faced black spider monkey (hybrid)0.2.0
HydrochaeridaeHydrochaeris hydrochaerisCapybara1.1.3


UP DESCRIPTION:

Apenheul opened the doors in 1971. There were no spider monkeys kept at that time. But there was an island that was about to become the ‘spider monkey island’. Apenheul built a spider monkey enclosure and house in 1981 and the island has remained unchanged since then, except for the climbing structures that were renewed at regular intervals. In 2007, a new Amazonia bridge was built around the spider monkey island. The bridge, together with a newly-built large aviary, is situated in the Amazonia part of the park, a project that is part of the new 10-year masterplan of 2008-2017.

Amazonia is a working title for a completely new area around the existing main building. The main building will be demolished and the available space will provide space for a new building for woolly monkeys and giant otters. The completed Amazonia will provide a whole new park section with a high visitor experience value.

The spider monkey / capybara exhibit, one large circular island with a small fence through the middle, offers space for eight spider monkeys and five capybaras. The reasons to combine spider monkeys with capybaras are twofold: the two species occupy different levels in the enclosure (ground level and trees) and they occur together in parts of their wild distribution.

To prevent escape, a steel plate is attached to the Amazonia bridge. The spider monkeys are unable to get a grip on this steel plate. Also, the spider monkeys are unable to jump from the trees on to the bridge, simply because the distance between the trees or climbing structures and the bridge is too wide. Wire mesh fences prevent the capybaras from leaving the island.

In the spring of 2008 the first part of Amazonia was finished: a (partly covered) walking bridge and an aviary. The walking bridge is situated around the spider monkey island and offers a view across the bonobo island, of the capuchin monkeys, the spider monkeys and the capybaras. It was difficult for the public to observe these animals before the bridge was built.

In the winter of 2009-2010 a new viewing platform is being built for visitors. It will be on top of the spider monkey house.

Durability and natural materials are important to Apenheul and also applied to Amazonia. Natural, durable materials are used for construction and animal enrichment.
 

UP SIZE:

The inside enclosures for the spider monkeys (in the spider monkey house) and capybaras are relatively small, but they have a large outdoor area. The inside enclosure for the capybaras (42 m²) is situated under the Amazonia bridge. The indoor dimensions noted below are for the spider monkeys enclosure. Outdoor dimensions are for the entire exhibit, including the Amazonia bridge.

Space allocation in square meters:

useindoorsoutdoors     total exhibit    
accessible     total     accessible     total    
animals34342,0002,000
visitors500500
others2626
total602,5002,560

 

UP COSTS:

The spider monkey island existed already before Apenheul opened the doors in 1971. Apenheul built a new spider monkey enclosure in 1981 and the island has remained unchanged since then. In 2007, a new Amazonia bridge was built around the spider monkey island. Costs for this specific exhibit therefore are not available.
 

UP OPENING DATE:

17 March 2008 (Bridge)
 

UP DESIGN:

Beginning: January 2007 (Bridge)

  • Final Design: Stichting Apenheul, Apeldoorn
  • Landscape Architect: S. Füss, Vollenhove

UP CONSTRUCTION:

Beginning: 12 November 2007 (Bridge)

  • Contractor Amazonia bridge: Maalderink - Reusken, Loenen
  • Wood supplier Amazonia bridge: Van Vliet Kastanjehout, Langbroek
  • Pole supplier Amazonia bridge: Reef Hout, Goor
  • Material supplier Amazonia Bridge: Würth Nederland, 's-Hertogenbosch
  • Ground work: Van Mourik Beekbergen, Lieren
  • Steelwork: LMB, Loenen
  • Aviary: Huck Torimex, Katwijk aan Zee
  • Wire mesh: Corton Constructiebedrijf BV, Kampen
  • Glass panels on bridge: Tetterode Glas, Voorthuizen
  • Floor coating spider monkey house: Conflat Coatings BV, Apeldoorn

UP LOCAL CONDITIONS:

walter.gif This is a climatic diagram for the closest weather station.

 

UP PLANTS:

The spider monkey island has a large stand of very tall, old pines and was planted with a small number of sturdy shrub and tree species after the construction of the new Amazonia bridge. These trees and shrubs are protected from capybara grazing by low, metal fencing. The large aviary contains several plant species. The landscape architect selected local plants with a lush growth and exotic appearance, but not very familiar to the majority of the public. Because the plants are hardy in the Dutch climate, it is not difficult to maintain them.

The plant list specifies the Latin names of the plants used for this exhibit.


UP FEATURES DEDICATED TO ANIMALS:

During summer, the spider monkeys stay outside all day and night. They have to come inside for a short period of time in the late afternoon so the keepers can have a good look at the animals and see if every individual is okay.

Enrichment is provided by interaction between and among the two species. Sometimes, the spider monkeys ride on the backs of the capybaras or chase them and grab their paws. The capybaras don’t seem to mind. There are also many climbing possibilities for the spider monkeys and a small river for the capybaras.

Resting platforms for the spider monkeys are now situated near the Amazonia bridge. Spider monkeys are highly intelligent animals and it seems they are also interacting with humans, especially the keepers who feed them while standing on the bridge. The monkeys can get from one platform to the other by the use of ropes. Their tail is clamped to a guideline (upper rope), so they can balance themselves while travelling to another part in the exhibit.

Shelter is also provided. The capybaras can hide under the bridge and the spider monkeys have special hiding places. Apenheul is closed in winter, but when it is not too cold outside, the monkeys have the choice to go outside or stay inside.

In the summer of 2008 the spider monkeys got bungee cords. This however was not a success. One of the spider monkeys got trapped, but luckily she could get herself out. The technical department of Apenheul tied large wooden blocks to the bungee cords, which prevents the cords from using the spider monkeys, instead of the other way around. But this was also not a success, so the bungee cords were removed from the island.
 

UP FEATURES DEDICATED TO KEEPERS:

All doors in the spider monkey house have windows to allow keepers to look into the building before entering.
 

UP FEATURES DEDICATED TO VISITORS:

The Amazonia bridge leads all around the spider monkey island taking the visitors to the same level as the monkeys. This allows visitors to have a good look at them - and vice versa. The designer of the bridge also thought about children and people in wheelchairs. Every 10 meters a wooden plank is replaced by a segment of clear sheet glass, so small children and people in wheelchairs can see the animals (picture no. 7).
 

UP INTERPRETATION:

Multilingual information (Dutch, English and German) is given about demographics, history and subspecies. To increase visitor attention, the bridge is on one level with the monkeys. The closer the public is to the animals, the more interesting it is for them.

Interaction between spider monkeys and capybaras is attractive for the public. In the coming years, when more animal species arrive and new enclosures are being built, visitors will get a whole new “South America” experience.
 

UP MANAGEMENT:

The concrete floor of the spider monkey house is covered by a thin, synthetic coating from Conflat Coatings BV. This floor coating is hygienic and durable. When the monkeys are outside, the inside enclosures can be cleaned.

The spider monkey house has six separation rooms, which are all connected to the island. In winter, all animals are kept together in one room while the keepers clean the other cages. Keepers can access the island through the spider monkey house.
 

UP RESEARCH:

A small research project was undertaken by an animal management student a few years ago when the spider monkeys outdoor exhibit got newly furnished. The student noted resting places and durations of every animal. How long did monkey 1 stay on platform A, how long on platform B, how long on the ground, etcetera. The results showed varied activities and resting places. Each individual has its favourite spot.
 

UP CONSERVATION:

A major request in the design process of the Amazonia bridge was to keep existing trees. For every tree felled, a new tree had to be planted.
 

UP LOCAL RESOURCES:

Almost all of the companies involved in design and construction are based in or near Apeldoorn.

over_t.jpg
71K115K
Overview
©Apenheul, 2008

 
site_t.jpg
79K104K
Site Plan
©Apenheul, 2008

 
pics_t.jpg
50K50K
Picture Views
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
7_t.jpg
31K96K
Spider monkey on platform (1)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
1_t.jpg
91K100K
Amazonia bridge (2)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
2_t.jpg
95K104K
Island view (3)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
3_t.jpg
66K100K
Ropes (4)
©Apenheul, 2005

 
8_t.jpg
76K115K
Interaction (5)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
5_t.jpg
95K + description103K
Platforms and shelters (6)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
6_t.jpg
92K + description101K
Island view (7)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
4_t.jpg
102K107K
Up in the tree (9)
©Apenheul, 2005

 
9_t.jpg
53K105K
Capybaras (10)
©Apenheul, 2005

 
10_t.jpg
82K92K
Capybara barrier (11)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
11_t.jpg
47K + description47K
Capybara inside enclosure (12)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
12_t.jpg
63K + description69K
Capybara inside enclosure (13)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
13_t.jpg
73K + description85K
Spider monkey house (14)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
14_t.jpg
76K + description93K
View from top of the spider monkey house (15)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
15_t.jpg
67K + description74K
Steel plates under the bridge (16)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
16_t.jpg
47K47K
Capybara enclosure (17)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
17_t.jpg
50K50K
Fence between capybara and spider monkey enclosure (18)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
18_t.jpg
63K70K
Island view (19)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
19_t.jpg
72K + description77K
Low metal fencing (20)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
20_t.jpg
66K + description72K
Informative sign (21)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 
21_t.jpg
49K57K
Multilingual graphic sign (22)
©Suzan Megens, 2008

 

null.gifLOCATIONKEY WORDSANIMALSAWARDSnull.gifDESCRIPTIONSIZECOSTSOPENING DATEnull.gifDESIGNCONSTRUCTIONLOCAL CONDITIONSPLANTSnull.gifFEATURES ANIMALSFEATURES KEEPERSFEATURES VISITORSINTERPRETATIONnull.gifRESEARCHMANAGEMENTCONSERVATIONLOCAL RESOURCESnull.gif

You are visitor number 10170 to this exhibit presentation.


TOP
Revised 2010-07-25
About | Gallery | Service | Firms | Fun | Research
pfeil_pix.gif