Monkey Jungle in Miami is a unique wildlife eco-show park that has been around since 1935. Located in a natural subtropical forest in southern Miami-Dade County, Monkey Jungle is a popular attraction for animal lovers and families. Unlike traditional zoos or circuses, Monkey Jungle focuses on natural behaviors in natural habitats. Visitors can witness monkeys and other wildlife living in their native habitats and interacting with their guides during regularly scheduled shows.
The park was established by Joseph DuMond to exhibit and study endangered monkeys in semi-natural habitats. Today, Monkey Jungle is home to over 300 primates and 30 different species, including orangutans, gibbons, howlers, and more. Visitors can observe these primates up close and personal in naturalistic eco-show areas. The park offers a unique opportunity to learn about these animals and their natural behaviors in a fun and interactive way.
Monkey Jungle’s tagline is “Where humans are caged and monkeys run wild,” and the park lives up to its name. Visitors can watch monkeys swing from tree to tree, interact with their guides, and even feed them. The park also offers educational programs for schools and groups, making it a great destination for field trips and educational outings. Overall, Monkey Jungle is a must-visit attraction for anyone interested in wildlife and nature.
History of Monkey Jungle
Monkey Jungle is a 30-acre zoological park located in South Miami, Florida. It was established in 1933 by animal behaviorist Joseph DuMond for the exhibition and study of endangered monkeys in semi-natural habitats. DuMond released six Java Macaques into a subtropical forest under his protection, and the animals thrived, prompting him to open Monkey Jungle to the public.
Over the years, Monkey Jungle has grown to become a one-of-a-kind eco-show park and discovery center, where visitors can experience the wildlife much as they would in their native habitats. The park is now home to over 300 primates, including the Java Macaques, Squirrel Monkeys, and Howler Monkeys.
Monkey Jungle has a rich history of primate conservation and education. The park has been instrumental in the breeding and reintroduction of several endangered species of monkeys, including the Cotton-top Tamarin and the Golden Lion Tamarin. Monkey Jungle’s conservation efforts have been recognized by various organizations, including the American Zoo and Aquarium Association.
Today, Monkey Jungle remains a popular destination for families, school groups, and animal lovers. Visitors can enjoy guided tours of the park, watch the primates interact with their environment during scheduled eco-shows, and learn about the importance of primate conservation and education.
Species of Monkeys at Monkey Jungle
Monkey Jungle is home to a diverse range of monkey species, including Amazonian and African monkeys.
The Amazonian monkeys at Monkey Jungle include the capuchin monkey, squirrel monkey, and tamarin monkey. These monkeys are native to the Amazon rainforest and are known for their intelligence and adaptability.
The capuchin monkey, also known as the black-capped capuchin, is a highly intelligent monkey that is often used in scientific research. They are known for their ability to use tools and solve complex problems.
The squirrel monkey is a small, agile monkey that lives in the canopy of the Amazon rainforest. They are known for their playful and curious nature and are often kept as pets.
The tamarin monkey is a small, colorful monkey that is native to the Amazon rainforest. They are known for their distinctive appearance, with long, white mustaches and colorful fur.
The African monkeys at Monkey Jungle include the baboon, colobus monkey, and guenon monkey. These monkeys are native to the forests and savannas of Africa and are known for their social behavior and intelligence.
The baboon is a large, powerful monkey that is known for its aggressive behavior. They live in large troops and are highly social animals.
The colobus monkey is a medium-sized monkey that is known for its distinctive black and white fur. They are arboreal animals, meaning they live in trees, and are known for their acrobatic abilities.
The guenon monkey is a small, colorful monkey that is native to the forests of Africa. They are known for their playful and social behavior and are often kept as pets.
Overall, Monkey Jungle provides a unique opportunity to observe and learn about a wide range of monkey species from around the world.
Activities at Monkey Jungle
Monkey Jungle offers a variety of activities for visitors to enjoy. Here are some of the most popular ones:
One of the highlights of visiting Monkey Jungle is the opportunity to feed the monkeys. Visitors can purchase monkey food from the gift shop and feed the monkeys through specially designed feeding stations. It’s a unique experience to see the monkeys up close and interact with them in this way. However, it’s important to follow the guidelines provided by Monkey Jungle staff to ensure the safety of both visitors and monkeys.
Monkey Jungle offers guided tours that provide visitors with a deeper understanding of the park’s mission and the animals that call it home. The tours are led by knowledgeable guides who share interesting facts and stories about the monkeys and other wildlife in the park. There are several tour options available, including private tours and group tours. Visitors can choose the tour that best fits their interests and schedule.
Overall, Monkey Jungle offers a fun and educational experience for visitors of all ages. Whether you’re feeding the monkeys or learning about their natural behaviors on a guided tour, there’s something for everyone to enjoy at this unique wildlife park.
Monkey Jungle is open every day of the year, except for Thanksgiving and Christmas Day. The park’s opening hours are from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Visitors are advised to check the park’s website or call ahead to confirm the hours of operation as they may be subject to change.
Admission prices for Monkey Jungle vary depending on the age of the visitor. Children under the age of 3 are admitted for free. The park offers discounts for seniors, military personnel, and groups of 10 or more people. Visitors can also purchase annual memberships which provide unlimited access to the park for a year.
Here are the current admission prices for Monkey Jungle:
|Adults (ages 18-64)
|Seniors (ages 65 and up)
|Children (ages 3-10)
|Groups of 10 or more
|$31.95 per person
Visitors can purchase tickets online or at the park’s entrance. Parking is free for all visitors. The park accepts cash, credit, and debit cards as payment for admission and purchases within the park.
Conservation Efforts at Monkey Jungle
Monkey Jungle is not just a place for entertainment and fun. It is also a center for primate conservation and education. The DuMond Conservancy for Primates & Tropical Forests, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit science and education affiliate of Monkey Jungle, is dedicated to the preservation of primates and tropical forests.
The conservation efforts at Monkey Jungle are focused on primate research, education, and habitat preservation. The park’s staff, volunteers, and students work with professional affiliates from academic institutions to conduct observational research and education programs. Partnerships with institutions such as Florida International University, Randolph-Macon College, University of Miami, and Florida Southern College enable the DuMond Conservancy to provide access to the unique forested environs and primate collection at Monkey Jungle for innovative research and education programs.
Monkey Jungle’s conservation efforts include the following initiatives:
- Breeding Programs: Monkey Jungle has a successful breeding program for endangered primates, such as the cotton-top tamarin and the black-handed spider monkey. The park also participates in the Species Survival Plan (SSP) of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) to ensure the survival of endangered species.
- Habitat Preservation: Monkey Jungle is committed to preserving the natural habitat of primates. The park has a 30-acre (12 ha) zoological park that is home to over 300 primates. The primates live in semi-natural habitats that mimic their natural environment. The park also has a large tropical forest that is home to many other species of plants and animals.
- Educational Programs: Monkey Jungle offers educational programs for visitors of all ages. The park’s staff provides guided tours and interactive exhibits to teach visitors about the importance of primate conservation and habitat preservation. The park also hosts school groups and summer camps to educate children about the natural world and inspire them to become conservationists.
Overall, Monkey Jungle’s conservation efforts are making a positive impact on the preservation of primates and tropical forests. The park’s commitment to research, education, and habitat preservation is a testament to its dedication to the natural world.
Reviews and Testimonials
Monkey Jungle has received numerous positive reviews and testimonials from visitors who have experienced the unique eco-show park and discovery center. Here are a few examples:
- One visitor on Yelp raved about their experience, saying, “I am so glad we decided to splurge a bit on our tickets and go for the VIP tour. It was worth every penny! We got to feed and interact with the monkeys, and the guide was incredibly knowledgeable and friendly.”
- Another reviewer on TripAdvisor called Monkey Jungle “a rare, unique, intimate experience,” adding, “The monkeys were so playful and curious, and it was amazing to see them in their natural habitat. I would highly recommend this place to anyone visiting Miami.”
- A visitor to Monkey Jungle in October 2022 wrote on TripAdvisor, “Going here was one of the highlights in my childhood – 50 years ago. Figured it would have changed a lot – but NO, it was wonderfully fabulously just as it was – ‘Where Humans are Cages and Monkey run wild.'”
- Many visitors have also praised the COVID-19 safety policies in place at Monkey Jungle, including advance reservations and mandatory mask-wearing for all visitors. One reviewer on TripAdvisor wrote, “I felt very safe and comfortable during my visit, and I appreciate the measures that Monkey Jungle has taken to protect their guests.”
Overall, visitors to Monkey Jungle have consistently praised the unique and immersive experience of interacting with monkeys in their natural habitat, as well as the knowledgeable and friendly staff and the park’s commitment to safety during the COVID-19 pandemic.
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