No matter what species you are, there’s just something about a mother and child relationship. Nowhere was it more evident than when I got a sneak peek of Monkey Kingdom, which is in theaters on Friday, April 17th. I laughed and I cried but you’ll have to wait until Friday to get my full review on that. But what was really fun is that after I screened Monkey Kingdom, I headed to the Los Angeles Zoo for an afternoon.
I was armed with Maya, the star of Monkey Kingdom. Set in the storied jungles of South Asia, “Monkey Kingdom” showcases the adventures of new mom Maya, a clever and resourceful blonde-bobbed monkey who’s determined to give her son a leg up in the world. I couldn’t wait to get up close and personal with the monkey’s at the LA Zoo!
It sounds funny but it was actually a lot of fun to explore the zoo without my kids. At our local zoo, the kid are always running from one animal to the next but for this experience, I was actually able to listen to the zookeepers and learn more about the animals that live at the LA Zoo. I loved seeing the mother/child relationships between the animals – there are lots of babies at the LA Zoo!
Red Uakari and Southern Black Howler Monkey
We were able to explore the Monkey Kingdom that the LA Zoo had to offer and I loved meeting the Red Uakari and Southern Black Howler Monkeys.
Uakari Monkeys are found in the Amazon River basin of western Brazil, eastern Peru and possibly southern Colombia. Their bright red faces are created by the large numbers of capillaries under the skin of their faces and bald heads.
I loved seeing them up close and they were very active as they moved around. They also recognized their zookeeper and would communicate with her which I loved!
The Black Howler Monkey originated in the forest areas of South America and currently resides in both Central and South America, including some of the local islands. At the LA Zoo, there’s a cute little family – a mom, a dad and a baby. The zookeeper let us know that the parents are taking very good care of the baby and that they only intervene if there’s something that could be harmful to the baby monkey.
We got to see the zookeeper feeding them grapes and it was so fun to see! They couldn’t get enough of them!
Fun Fact: The Black Howler Monkey is the loudest land animal in the world!
I loved being able to see the Siamang, which is considered a lesser ape. They were so active and vocal and I couldn’t stop smiling! Check out this fun video below of Charlotte “talking”.
Chimpanzees can be found all over Africa, from Senegal and Gambia to Uganda and Tanzania. The Los Angeles Zoo is home to one of the largest chimpanzee troops of any zoo in the country. There are several baby chimpanzees that we were able to see and they were adorable!
We got to see a few other animals at the Los Angeles Zoo including hippos, koala bears, river otters, kangaroos and more!
We also got to have some fun by acting like a kid ourselves with a carousel ride! I can’t tell you the last time that I rode a carousel without standing next to a kid!
I loved being able to explore the Los Angeles Zoo and see all of the different animals that they house. It was especially fun to have seen Monkey Kingdom and then go directly to the zoo to see them monkeys in person. This would be a fun weekend activity to do with your kids this weekend – Monkey Kingdom and Zoo day!
When you see MONKEY KINGDOM opening week (April 17-23), Disneynature will make a donation in your honor to Conservation International to help protect monkeys and other endangered species in their natural habitats. Learn more at http://nature.disney.com/
You can also buy Maya or Kip from the Disney Store and they will donate $1 to Conservation International for every Disneynature plush purchased between 3/13/2015 and 5/14/2015, with a minimum donation of $2000.
Connect with Monkey Kingdom and Disneynature
Connect with the LA Zoo
Monkey Kingdom is in theaters April 17th!
Disclosure: Disney provided an all expenses paid trip to Los Angeles including travel, accommodations and activities. All thoughts and opinions are my own.