Friday Know Your Primate: Woolly Monkeys

Todays’ entry is my favorite platyrrhine.



Infraorder: Platyrrhini
Subfamily: Atelinae
Genus: Lagothrix
Species: Lagothrix lagotricha
Common Name: Woolly Monkey
Woolly monkeys are a prehensile tailed species (there are two L. lagotricha and L. flavicaudata) related to spider monkeys and howler monkeys.

They reside in parts of Columbia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, and parts of Brazil. They are primarily, as the prehensile tail indicates, an aboreal quadruped and spend little time on the ground. They travel in multimale, multifemale groups of 10-70 individuals. The groups are usually family groups, although on occasion several family groups travel together. They are territorial with an average territory being about 11 square kilometers. They primarily eat fruit but also eat leaves and insects. I owned a woolly monkey (not recommended, they belong in the wild) some thirty years ago which loved chicken necks, other woolly monkeys in captivity have been observed preying on sparrows and sharing their catch.
The fossil record on woolly monkeys is sparse, to say the least, while DNA studies indicate they are most closely related to Brachyteles (the woolly spider monkeys). DNA evidence also indicates that the Lagothrix/Brachyteles clade branched from the Atelini approximately 12 million years ago.
For more info Animal Diversity Web

4 Responses

  1. Pfft. Catarrhines rule!!

  2. Be careful about dissing the platyrrhines or the tamarin lovers will show up and start flinging poo at ya!

  3. An animal belongs wherever it can make a good living. If that happens to be on city rooftops and public parks scrounging off the tourists, then that is the animal’s natural habitat.
    If Florida’s macaques manage to spread throughout North America and come to rely on human assistance for survival, then we’ll have another domestic animal.
    To paraphrase Prince Henry of Navarre, “A warm place to sleep is well worth a belly rub.”

  4. An animal belongs wherever it can make a good living

    Except in captivity as a personal pet…

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