Wild Fact #675 – The Lazy Adaptation – Guereza

Photo from Wikicommons

Today we are going to celebrate Monkey Monday (I swear I just make these things up as I go) by exploring the world of the Guereza, which is also known as the Eastern Black and White Colobus, Mantled Guereza or the Abyssinian Black and White Colobus.  So where does all of this “Colobus” talk come from?  Well, you see the Guereza is actually a type of Colobus monkey.  These are old world monkey’s native to Africa.  Yep, you guessed it, we are heading to west central or east Africa to learn about this unique primate.

The Mantled Guereza typically has a length between 46 and 71 cm (18-28″) with a tail measuring  51 to 89 cm (20-35″).  Yes, that means that the tail of this cuddly monkey is actually longer than the monkey itself.  As you would expect this tail is the perfect adaptation for life in the trees.  An even better (and more interesting) adaptation to tree-life are the rump callouses these animals have.  This gives them the ability to sit for long periods of time on those skinny branches without getting uncomfortable.  I know you probably think that your husband must have these from the couch but lets be nice.

Photo from Wikicommons

The social life of the Guereza is exciting since they usually hang out in troops of 6 to 9 individuals.  Unlike other monkey families this troop may actually contain more than one adult male.  They also take control of a large tract of land which is typically around 40 acres.  Usually they will have a preferred area within this home range.  I guess everyone has their favourite spots.  If another troop enters this territory they will normally be chased, however, they will not necessarily be totally excluded from the area.  The Colobus monkey will use a variety of calls and sounds to indicate which areas are theirs.

Guereza Fast Fact – Although we may think that all monkey’s have the famous “opposable thumb” the Guereza actually has a very undeveloped thumb.  This obviously does not interfere with their tree climbing abilities since they are very proficient in the tree tops.  Besides, who needs an opposable thumb when you have rump callouses??

Thanks for participating in Monkey Monday’s.  See all of you back for tomorrow for another Wild and Amazing Fact!

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  1. mom 7 years ago
    • Nathan Nathan 7 years ago

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