Since I am still having nightmares from the vicious Honey Badger Wild Fact, I figured I would calm things down today and write about a nice, soft, fuzzy monkey. Well I guess it isn’t technically a “Fuzzy Monkey” since I am actually talking about the “Woolly Monkey”. For the record, if I ever discover a new monkey species, I am naming it the Fuzzy Monkey.
The Woolly Monkey can be found hanging out in the tropical forests of north-west South America. They are actually well known for their incredibly round head and of course for their dense “wool-like” fur. Not unusual for monkey’s the Woolly Monkey has a strong prehensile tail which allows them to live a life in the trees. The Woolly Monkey is a social animal and will usually live in troops ranging from 10 to 45 individuals. That would be one soft, cuddly troop of monkey’s.
Although they live in this main group they will often break up into sub-foraging groups of 2 to 6 individuals. No this isn’t just because a monkey troop is as cliquey as a Grade 9’s homeroom class (do they even have homeroom still?). Actually, they create these smaller groups to reduce the food competition between the individual members of the hunting party. This way, everyone gets some food to eat without having to cheat, steal and lie. Good strategy, Woolly Monkey!
The Woolly Monkey can weigh up to 8 kg (18 lbs) and as a result only has a few natural predators such as eagles and cats like the jaguar. Of course, humans are probably their largest predator since we seem to like the way they taste. Similarly humans will often capture them for use in the illegal pet trade. If anyone you know has a Woolly Monkey, it very well could be illegal. I guess I will have to find a new Christmas gift for my monkey-loving mother.
Woolly Monkey Fast Fact – Play time is very important for the Woolly Monkey as it not only creates lifetime bonds between troop members but it also establish the hierarchy of the troop. Just like in the school yard it is play time that identifies the leader of your clique.
That does it for today’s mid-week Wild Fact. I will see all of you tomorrow with another animal.