Yellow-Tailed Woolly Monkey

Oreonax flavicauda
The Yellow-tailed woolly monkeys are easily recognizable primates due to their long, dark, reddish-brown coat as well as white ring of fur around their mouth. However, the most conspicuous feature of this species is the small, yellow colored strip on the underside of their tail, giving these animals their name. These monkeys have a prehensile tail, which can grip objects. The Yellow-tailed woolly monkeys were originally discovered in the early 19th century. Over time, however, they were believed to have gone extinct. And finally, in 1974, this species was discovered again.
below 250

population size

10-20 yrs

Life span

56 km/h

Top Speed

5.7-8 kg

Weight

51-53.5 cm

Length

Disrtibution

The tiny natural range of this species covers parts of Peruvian Andes, namely, the Department of San Martín in the east and Amazonas in the west. Within this territory, the Yellow-tailed woolly monkeys inhabit 20–25 meters-high canopy of montane cloud forests, most commonly found in rough areas such as steep mountain slopes or deep gorges along rivers.

Habits and lifestyle

The Yellow-tailed woolly monkeys are tree-dwelling primates that are active during the daylight hours. They are highly social animals, gathering in groups of 4 - 30 individuals, consisting of a single alpha male, multiple mature individuals of both genders, infants and juveniles. Meanwhile, community size varies greatly among seasons, depending on the availability of suitable food. Small groups occasionally form larger aggregations during periods of abundant food. Group members don't appear to engage in competition. Each group maintains its own, large territory to be able to find sufficient amount of food. Communication between conspecifics is generally performed through vocalizations such as the loud, puppy-like barking call, which is commonly used as an alarm call or a territorial display.

group name

troop, barrel, cartload, tribe, wilderness

Diet and nutrition

Yellow-tailed woolly monkeys are herbivores and generally feed upon leaves, fruits and flowers. These primates are also known to consume buds, petioles and roots of epiphytes.

Diet

Population

Population Trend

Population status

ne
dd
lc
nt
vu
en
cr
ew
ex

Population threats

This species currently faces a number of quite serious threats. For example, they suffer from continuous hunting. Throughout their tiny range, the small population of these animals is threatened by loss and fragmentation of their natural habitat as a result of human activities such as road development and logging. Some parts of their range are turned into agricultural land. And finally, Yellow-tailed woolly monkeys are threatened by growing human population without their range.

Population number

According to the Wikipedia resource, the last estimated population count of the Yellow-tailed woolly monkeys revealed a total population of less than 250 individuals. Currently, this species is classified as Critically Endangered (CR) and its numbers continue to decrease.

Fun facts for kids

  1. Wooly monkeys are so called due to their fur, consisting of soft, thick and wooly hairs, which differ between various species of this genus.
  2. These primates are almost exclusively arboreal and generally avoid descending to the ground. However, when they do come down, these animals usually move along the ground by two legs, balancing with their arms and tails.
  3. They primarily communicate through vocalizations, olfactory signals as well as visual and tactile cues. Additionally, group members are known to share food, thus strengthening relationships between each other.
  4. Along with humans, monkeys have unique fingerprints, which can help detect individuals.
  5. These animals exhibit well-developed toes and fingers, which are used to grasp various objects. Some species also possess prehensile tails, which can grab tree branches and other objects.
  6. A monkey group is referred to as a "troop", "tribe" or "mission".
  7. Species of wooly monkey typically spend their daytime hours resting among dense canopy of treetops.

References

  1. Yellow-Tailed Woolly Monkey Wikipedia article
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yellow-tailed_woolly_monkey
  2. Yellow-Tailed Woolly Monkey on The IUCN Red List site
    http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/39924/0