Black Howler Monkey Natural History
The Black Howler Monkey is the largest monkey in Latin American forests with males being larger than females. They reach up to 65cm with a tail which also reaches 65cm and weigh around 15kg.
Habitat and Distribution
This monkey inhabits broadleaf forests throughout South America including in countries such as Brazil, Argentina and Bolivia.
The lifespan of a Black Howler Monkey is up to 20 years.
These primates are herbivores. In the wild they spend most of their time high in the trees foraging and feeding on a variety of leaves. They will also eat mature fruits such as figs, buds, flowers, seeds, moss, stems and twigs.
Groups and Breeding
They form groups of up to 20 individuals in the wild with one dominant male. Other members are usually made up of females and juveniles. Males within the troop give a dawn chorus each morning to establish the borders of their range.
One offspring is born after a 180 day gestation period. Both males and females are blonde until they reach the age of 2 and a half when males start to turn black.
The Black Howler Monkey is classified as Near Threatened by the IUCN. Their numbers are declining, largely due to habitat loss and hunting but are also occasionally caught for the pet trade too.
Their howl can be heard up to 5km away.
The Black Howler Monkey During Your Day Out in Kent
We are currently home to three Black Howler Monkeys, a male named Mojo and two females who are mother and daughter named Minnie and Mila. They can be seen in Rainforest SOS opposite our Bornean Orangutans, Molly and Jin. They arrived in December 2020 and enjoy a healthy diet which is largely made up of a variety of vegetables.
The more you know…
Want to know more about this animal? Check out our keeper blogs about them here.