Liberty Science Center - Skype a Monkey!
Liberty Science Center is a museum, zoo, and an aquarium all in one. We care for and present over 100 species of native and exotic animals. See amazingly huge fish from the Hudson River, watch an alligator snapping turtle lure its prey, search for expertly camouflaged leaf-tail geckos, be amused by the playful behavior of cute Chilean degus, or even touch a giant Madagascar hissing cockroach.
Our animal-based exhibits and programs are extremely popular, and play a vital role in teaching important concepts of natural history, biodiversity, and conservation. In particular, Liberty Science Center’s dedication to providing access to underserved communities allows us to help children and families that have often had very little exposure to wild animals develop an appreciation of nature.
We now have the opportunity to add a new and exciting monkey exhibit to the animal collection, and to offer some fun web-based and in-person perks (listed on the right) along the way. You can even Skype a monkey!
No monkey business here - we want to spread the word about conservation.
Cotton-top tamarins (Saquinus oedipus) are small monkeys (about the size of a squirrel) with a distinctive crest of long white hair on their heads. Found only in tropical forests in northern Colombia, they are among the world’s most endangered primates. In fact, they are listed as Critically Endangered on the IUCN's (International Union for Conservation of Nature) Red List - the highest risk category that can be assigned to a species. Very few of these animals are left in the wild, where they are increasingly threatened by deforestation.
Our goal is to bring a captive-bred pair of cotton-top tamarins to Liberty Science Center. In addition to being highly entertaining to watch, the tamarins will serve as animal ambassadors, educating students, teachers, families and other guests about habitat protection and endangered species management, as well as primate biology. In time, we hope our pair will start a family here, allowing us to participate in a national breeding program to maintain a genetically diverse captive population.
What can tamarins teach us?
Within the Eat and Be Eaten exhibition at LSC, visitors discover how animal physiology, adaptations and behavior play a role in what animals eat while also helping them to avoid being prey. The addition of tamarins to this live collection will enable LSC to provide a broad range of educational programming opportunities about these fascinating primates. Young children can observe how the monkeys' tails and claws help them balance and navigate branches, while older students can discover how the tamarins' binocular vision aides in jumping as well as locating food. Guests can also learn about the tamarins' diet and nutrition and observe LSC Husbandry staff offering daily behavioral enrichment opportunities to the monkeys - important activities for both mental and physical stimulation.
We need your help!
We want to provide our new monkeys with the best possible care, and this is where we need your help. Creating a perfect monkey habitat involves addressing lots of issues including temperature control, lighting, ventilation, drainage, climbing structures, and animal enrichment. Your donation will help us create a great new home for our tamarins. You’ll enjoy the cool perks listed to the right, and you’ll feel great about contributing to wildlife conservation education. Most importantly, you’ll be able to look forward to seeing an awesome new monkey exhibit when you visit Liberty Science Center!
Primates come with perks!
Your contribution towards a new tamarin habitat at Liberty Science Center will enable you to observe and even participate as the exhibit takes shape.
Exciting perks for our donors range from digital images of the tamarins that we acquire to informative educational materials and even previews of the monkeys via an exclusive webcam. You can also contribute towards a behind-the-scenes event with LSC's Animal Husbandry team. Or, perhaps you've always wanted to video chat with these highly social primates - there's a perk for that! A $500 donation gets you the opportunity to Skype with the monkeys in their habitat.
The two biggest contributors to our campaign will have the right to actually name one of the monkeys - in addition to Skyping with "your" monkey, you'll also get to come hang out with him/her at LSC, and your chosen name will be featured in all museum materials. (Be nice!)
Since we're a non-profit institution dedicated to promoting science exploration, all contributions are 100% tax deductible.
Get the word out.
Here's your chance to knock Justin Bieber off Twitter's Trending list! Be sure to spread the word about our tamarin campaign on all of your social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest, etc.
We’re very excited about our soon-to-be-adopted monkeys – thanks to everyone who helped make this a reality!
With two baby monkey names yet to be claimed, we also wanted to announce what we’re planning to do with any money we raise over the $20,000 goal. They are:
1) Healthy and delicious monkey food for the tamarins once they arrive, and
2) Top-notch educational materials to help teach kids about tamarins and conservation.
So thanks again all, keep sharing our project, and see you (and the monkeys) soon at LSC!