Howler monkey

Species profile

Name: howler monkeys are a group of fifteen closely related species that belong to the Alouatta genus and Alouattinae subfamily.

Appearance: howler monkeys have short snouts and wide nostrils with which they can smell food up to 2 km away. They have prehensile tails which they use for picking fruit and nuts from trees. Their fur colour varies by species and can be brown, black, or a distinctive red .

Size: they are large monkeys which range in size from around 1.1 to 1.8 metres.

Diet: howler monkeys mainly eat leaves high up in the canopy as well as fruits, buds, flowers, and nuts. They are also known to occasionally raid birds’ nests and chicken coops to find eggs.

Did you know: vocal communication is an important part of howler monkeys’ social behaviour. They have an enlarged bone in their throats which helps them to make deep guttural growls and howls. Howler monkeys are considered to be the loudest animal on earth and according to the Guinness Book of World Records, their calls can be heard clearly from almost 5 km away! The reason for their howling is thought to relate to protection of territory or mates.

Location: howler monkeys are native to forests in South and Central America.

Best places to see howler monkeys

According to reports submitted to WildSide, the best places to see howler monkeys are as follows:

Place Chance to see User rating No. reports
Los Llanos
very high
very good
Madre de Dios
very good

Photo credit: Michelle Bender under a Creative Commons license from Flickr

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