Monkeys are fascinating creatures that come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. There are over 260 species of monkeys, divided into two types: Old World monkeys and New World monkeys. Old World monkeys are native to Africa and Asia, while New World monkeys are found in Central and South America.
In this article, we will introduce you to the 10 species of monkey breeds you should know. These species are known for their unique traits, behaviors, and physical characteristics. From the colorful mandrill to the tiny pygmy marmoset, each of these species has something special to offer.
So, let’s dive in and learn more about these amazing animals!
10 Species Of Monkey Breeds You Should Know
Golden Lion Tamarin
The golden lion tamarin, also known as the golden marmoset, is a small New World monkey of the family Callitrichidae. This species is native to the Atlantic coastal forests of Brazil and is an endangered species.
The golden lion tamarin gets its name from its bright reddish-orange pelage and the extra-long hairs around the face and ears, which give it a distinctive mane.
Its face is dark and hairless. The bright orange fur of this species does not contain carotenoids, which commonly produce bright orange colors in nature.
The golden lion tamarin is the largest of the callitrichines, typically around 261 mm (10.3 in) and weighs around 620 g (1.37 lb).
Golden lion tamarins are omnivorous, feeding on fruits, flowers, nectar, bird eggs, insects, and small vertebrates. They rely on microhabitats for foraging and other daily activities and use their fingers to extract prey from crevices, under leaves, and in dense growth; a behavior known as micromanipulation.
Golden lion tamarins are social and form groups. Males help to raise their offspring and often carry their young on their backs in between feedings.
Golden Snub-nosed Monkey
The golden snub-nosed monkey, also known as the Sichuan golden hair monkey, is an Old World monkey species in the subfamily Colobinae.
This species is endemic to a small area in temperate, mountainous forests of central and Southwest China, at elevations of 1,500–3,400 m (4,900–11,200 ft) above sea level.
The golden snub-nosed monkey is one of the three species of snub-nosed monkeys in China and is the most widely distributed throughout China.
The males of this species have a thick coat of bright golden fur, especially on their head and neck, and are accented with long black-gray guard hairs on their shoulders, upper arms, and back. Females share similar colorings, but their guard hair tends to appear brown-black.
The golden snub-nosed monkey is an elusive primate that has escaped close, extended study by human scientists. This species is endangered due to habitat loss, and hunting prohibitions are a step in the right direction, but more must be done to prevent further fragmentation of their habitat.
The mandrill is a large Old World monkey species native to west-central Africa. It is one of the most colorful mammals in the world, with red and blue skin on its face and posterior.
The species is sexually dimorphic, as males have a larger body, longer canines, and more vivid coloration than females. Mandrills are the largest monkeys in the world, with males weighing up to 119 pounds (54 kg) and females weighing up to 27 pounds (12 kg).
Mandrills are classified as vulnerable on the IUCN Red List due to habitat destruction and hunting for bushmeat. The species is found in west-central Africa, including southern Cameroon, mainland Equatorial Guinea (Río Muni), Gabon, and parts of the Republic of the Congo.
Mandrills are omnivorous, feeding on fruits, seeds, insects, small vertebrates, and soil and clay. They are social animals that live in troops consisting of a male and several females along with their young.
Mandrills use body language and facial expressions to communicate their social status and intentions.
Brown Spider Monkey
The brown spider monkey, also known as the variegated spider monkey, is a critically endangered species of New World monkey found in forests in northern Colombia and northwestern Venezuela.
Here are some interesting facts about the brown spider monkey:
– The brown spider monkey has long, slender limbs and a long prehensile tail.
– It has a whitish belly and patch on the forehead, and its eyes can be pale blue.
– The species is mahogany brown with a buff-colored underside, and some have distinctive triangle patches on their forehead.
– Brown spider monkeys spend almost their whole lives arboreally, with limbs that are not well adapted to being on the ground.
– They live in groups of up to 30 animals but will often break into smaller groups to forage.
– Brown spider monkeys are frugivores but are known to also eat other plant parts including flowers and occasionally eat insects such as termites and caterpillars.
Habitat and Conservation:
– Brown spider monkeys are restricted to subtropical and tropical moist lowlands in Venezuela and Colombia.
– They are habitat specialists and prefer undisturbed old forests (primary forests) and rarely inhabit disturbed forests with less complete canopy (secondary forests).
– The brown spider monkey is one of the most threatened primates in the Neotropics and has been listed six times on The World’s 25 Most Endangered Primates.
– The brown spider monkey is one of the few spider monkey species with blue eyes.
The emperor tamarin (Saguinus imperator) is a small New World monkey species that is native to the north Brazilian states of Acre and Amazonas, as well as the southwest Amazon Basin, in east Peru, and north Bolivia.
Here are some interesting facts about the emperor tamarin:
– Emperor tamarins are small, tree-dwelling monkeys that live in extended family groups.
– They are lightweight enough to forage for fruit and insects on the outermost tips of tree branches.
– Emperor tamarins have gray fur with a silvery-brown crown and a reddish-orange tail.
– They have long, white whiskers that sweep back from the muzzle on both sides and look like mustaches.
– Emperor tamarins have dark fur on their faces and ears, and their bodies are primarily gray with small amounts of gold, white, and red.
– They have long canine teeth and claws (rather than nails) on all digits except for the big toe.
– Emperor tamarins are diurnal (awake during the day) and live in trees.
– They are capable of running or walking across the forest floor and leaping across branches.
– Emperor tamarins are very social and interactive with humans in captivity.
– A study of the social behavior of emperor tamarins in captivity found that tamarin colonies behave agonistically according to seniority.
Habitat and Conservation:
– Emperor tamarins are native to the southwest Amazon Basin, with a range that crosses Peru, Brazil, and Bolivia.
– They live in a variety of wooded habitats, including lowland, mountain, and seasonal flooded forests.
– Emperor tamarins are omnivorous, primarily eating fruit but may also feed on insects, gum, nectar, and leaves.
– The species is not currently endangered, but habitat loss and fragmentation are threats to their survival.
Central Proboscis Monkey
The Central Proboscis Monkey, also known as the Nasalis larvatus, is a large, arboreal primate found along rivers and in swampy mangrove forests of Borneo. Here are some interesting facts about the Central Proboscis Monkey:
– The Central Proboscis Monkey is named for the male’s long and pendulous nose, which is used to attract mates.
– The nose is smaller in females and is upturned in the young.
– Males are 56–72 cm (22–28 inches) long and weigh an average of 20 kg (44 pounds), while females weigh only about 10 kg (22 pounds).
– The species is red-brown with pale underparts, and the tail is about the same length as the body.
– Central Proboscis Monkeys live in groups of about 20 consisting of a single male and up to a dozen females; males live in bachelor groups.
– The young have blue faces and are born singly, apparently at any time of year.
– Proboscis monkeys wade upright through water, which makes them exceptional among monkeys in being habitually bipedal.
– The species is highly arboreal and will venture onto land only occasionally to search for food.
Habitat and Conservation:
– Central Proboscis Monkeys are endemic to the jungles of Borneo, never straying far from the island’s rivers, coastal mangroves, and swamps.
– They are a highly arboreal species and live in organized harem groups consisting of a dominant male and two to seven females and their offspring.
– The species is classified as endangered due to habitat destruction and hunting for bushmeat.
– Despite government protection, habitat destruction has caused a decline in the population of this species.
The pygmy marmoset is one of the smallest primates in the world, with a body length of just over 100 mm (4 in) and a weight of around 120 g (4.2 oz) . Here are some interesting facts about the pygmy marmoset:
– Pygmy marmosets have a distinctive appearance, with a long tail and a mane of hair around their face.
– They have sharp claws that allow them to cling to trees and move quickly through the forest canopy.
– Pygmy marmosets have a grayish-brown coat with black and white markings on their face, ears, and feet.
– They have a specialized dental structure that allows them to gnaw holes in tree bark to extract sap and gum.
– Pygmy marmosets are social animals that live in groups of two to nine individuals.
– The groups consist of one or two adult males, one or two adult females, and a single breeding female with her offspring.
– Pygmy marmosets are active during the day and spend most of their time in trees.
– They communicate with each other using a variety of vocalizations, including trills, whistles, and chirps.
Habitat and Conservation:
– Pygmy marmosets are native to the rainforests of the western Amazon Basin in South America.
– They are threatened by habitat loss due to deforestation and the pet trade.
– The species is listed as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List, but their population is decreasing.
– Pygmy marmosets are protected by law in most of their range countries, and captive breeding programs have been established to help conserve the species.
The rhesus macaque, also known as the rhesus monkey, is a species of Old World monkey. Here are some interesting facts about the rhesus macaque:
– Rhesus macaques are generally brown or grey in color, with a pink face that is bereft of fur.
– They are 47–53 cm (19–21 in) in length with a 20.7–22.9 cm (8.1–9.0 in) tail and weigh 5.3–7.7 kg (12–17 lb).
– Rhesus macaques have a wide rib cage and an average of 50 vertebrae.
– They have a highly expressive face and communicate with a variety of facial expressions, vocalizations, body postures, and gestures.
– Rhesus macaques are gregarious and live in troops comprising 20–200 individuals.
– The social groups are matrilineal, whereby a female’s rank is decided by the rank of her mother.
– Rhesus macaques are omnivores and feed on a wide array of plant and invertebrate products.
– They are highly intelligent and have been used extensively in medical and psychological research.
Habitat and Conservation:
– Rhesus macaques are native to Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Southeast Asia, and China.
– They are adaptable to many habitats and can even become accustomed to living in human communities.
– The species is not currently endangered, but some populations are threatened by habitat loss and hunting.
– Rhesus macaques are also considered an invasive species in some areas, such as Florida, where they were introduced and have become established in the wild.
The common marmoset, also known as the white-tufted marmoset or white-tufted-ear marmoset, is a small New World monkey species that is native to the northeastern coast of Brazil. Here are some interesting facts about the common marmoset:
– Common marmosets are small-bodied primates with an adult body length of 14-19 cm (not including their long tail) and an average adult body mass of 300-500 g.
– They have a distinctive appearance, with a white tuft of hair around their ears and a grayish-brown coat with black and white markings on their face, ears, and feet.
– Common marmosets have claw-like nails, incisor shape, and gut specialization that reflect their unique diet, which is primarily made of plant exudates and insects.
– Common marmosets are social animals that live in groups of 3 to 15 individuals, with an average of 9.
– The groups often include three family generations: one or two breeding females with one or more breeding males, related adults such as parents or siblings, and a breeding pair’s offspring.
– Females within a group are usually closely related (mothers/daughters and sisters), while adult males are more often émigrés from an outside common marmoset group.
– Common marmosets are exudativore-insectivores and use their nails to cling to the side of a tree, and with their long lower incisors, chew a hole in the tree. The marmoset then licks up the exudates or swoops them with the teeth.
Habitat and Conservation:
– Common marmosets are endemic to Brazil and are found in the northeastern and central forests from the Atlantic coast and inland as far west as the Rio Grande.
– The species is not currently threatened, but its habitat has been degraded at a fast rate, with around 67% of the Cerrado region cleared for human use in the 1990s and around 80% cleared for cultivation more recently.
– Common marmosets are captured and traded as pets, and they are also used in medical and biological research labs.
Gibbons are apes in the family Hylobatidae, and there are over a dozen recognized species of gibbons ranging from northeastern India to southern China to Borneo. Here are some interesting facts about gibbons:
– Gibbons are small-bodied primates with a body length of 14-19 cm (not including their long tail) and an average adult body mass of 300-500 g.
– They have a distinctive appearance, with long arms and legs, and a ball-and-socket joint in their wrist that allows for biaxial movement.
– Depending on the species and sex, gibbons’ fur coloration varies from dark- to light-brown shades, and any shade between black and white, though a completely “white” gibbon is rare.
– Gibbons are the fastest of all tree-dwelling, nonflying mammals, and can make leaps up to 8 m (26 ft) and walk bipedally with their arms raised for balance.
– Gibbons are highly arboreal and live in trees.
– They are diurnal and are active during the day.
– Gibbons are social animals that live in family groups consisting of a mated pair and their offspring.
– They communicate with each other using a variety of vocalizations, including songs that can be heard up to 2 km (1.2 mi) away.
Habitat and Conservation:
– Gibbons are found in subtropical and tropical rainforests from eastern Bangladesh to Northeast India to southern China to Borneo.
– The species is threatened by habitat loss due to deforestation and hunting for bushmeat.
– Gibbons are also captured and traded as pets, and they are used in medical and biological research labs.
– The IUCN Species Survival Commission has listed all species of gibbons as endangered or critically endangered.
1. What are the two types of monkeys?
The two types of monkeys are Old World monkeys and New World monkeys.
2. How many species of monkeys are there?
There are over 260 species of monkeys.
3. What is the smallest primate in the world?
The pygmy marmoset is one of the smallest primates in the world.
4. What is the largest monkey in the world?
The mandrill is the largest monkey in the world.
5. What is the most colorful mammal in the world?
The mandrill is one of the most colorful mammals in the world.
6. What is the habitat of the Central Proboscis Monkey?
The Central Proboscis Monkey is found along rivers and in swampy mangrove forests of Borneo.
7. What is the habitat of the common marmoset?
The common marmoset is native to the northeastern coast of Brazil.
8. What is the status of gibbons on the IUCN Red List?
All species of gibbons are listed as endangered or critically endangered on the IUCN Red List.
9. What are some threats to monkey populations?
Habitat loss, hunting for bushmeat, and capture for the pet trade are some threats to monkey populations.
10. Can monkeys make good pets?
No, monkeys do not make good pets, and the majority of people cannot own a monkey for numerous reasons.