ST. LOUIS – A new friend has arrived to the St. Louis Zoo, and she’s embracing some Halloween spirit.

The St. Louis Zoo recently welcomed Rhubarb to the world. She is a Francois’ langur monkey and was born on Sept. 30. Rhubarb is the first Francois’ langur to be born at the zoo and is an important birth for an endangered species.

Rhubarb has orange, pumpkin-colored hair. According to the zoo, the baby’s stand-out color helps her parents keep track of the newborn. After about six months, Rhubarb’s hair will likely change to her less-conspicuous adult coloring, mostly black. 

“For any species like langurs that practice allomothering, proper maternal care is an important skill for females to learn and to gain experience in,” Riepl stated, “With this being our first ever langur birth here at the Saint Louis Zoo, Rhubarb has been a valuable addition to our langur troop.”

Mother Dolly and father Deshi gave birth to Rhubarb at the Michael and Quirsis Riney Primate Canopy Trails at the Saint Louis Zoo. Sydney, another 15-year-old Francois’ langur will also help the two take care of Rhubarb.

“Dolly has been a phenomenal mother and, through the benefit of her having a great relationship with the keeper staff, has been incredibly accommodating to the supportive care that she and Rhubarb needed to get back on track,” said Ethan Riepl, Primate Keeper and Francois’ Langur Species Survival Plan Vice Coordinator, “She deserves all the credit in the world for our success.” 


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