A ZOO has welcomed the birth of an ape-solutely adorable baby monkey.

The critically endangered Sulawesi crested macaque was born on June 22 at Drusillas, near Alfriston, to parents Kera and Moteck.

The baby is reportedly healthy and headstrong and has been delighting visitors by trying out climbing, swinging and tumbling.

Head zookeeper Gemma Romanis said: “We are chuffed to bits to confirm that both mum and baby are making excellent progress, and we are starting to see the baby out and about bravely exploring.

“Kera is a brilliant mother; she was a total natural with her first born, Mango - who was born at Drusillas three years ago - and she’s proving herself once again with the little one.

“We are really proud of Moteck too. It is great to see him getting really stuck in as a dad again.”

Black crested macaques are known for their jet black hair, striking amber eyes, and bright pink bottoms - although the youngest member of the Drusillas macaque troop will not develop these physical attributes for some months and visitors should look out for a sweet hairless pink face this summer.

The Sulawesi black crested macaque is critically endangered, with over-hunting for meat and deforestation leading to a decline in the macaque population of more than 80 per cent over the last 40 years.

Gemma said: “As well as being totally adorable, the cause for celebration is that much more when we successfully breed a critically endangered species at Drusillas.

“The healthy arrival of this pair’s second baby provides a critical boost for the macaque population, and we’re all really proud to play our part in keeping this beautiful primate from extinction.”

The park is asking the public for name suggestions through its Facebook page.

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