Monkey (Black Howler) / Alouatta caraya

Did you know...

The calls of howler monkeys can be heard by humans up to five kilometres away

Only males are black, females and babies have yellowish-buff fur

Howler monkeys are so called because of their amazing howling calls. Calls are very loud due to a special voice box and pouch in the throat that amplifies sound. Both sexes call, but the male’s voice is much louder and deeper. The call enables individuals to keep in touch with their group and, more importantly, lets other groups know where they are.

Howler monkeys usually live in social groups of up to 30 animals, although five to eight is more common. They spend almost all of their time in the tree-tops, rarely venturing to the ground. Much of this time is spent feeding on various sorts of leaves. They are active during the day and make their way through the forest canopy in large slow-moving groups. In the morning, shortly after dawn, all the monkeys in a group take part in a chorus of howling. They prefer to stay away from other groups, although they do not defend a strict territory.

A single youngster is born following a gestation of six months and the baby is carried beneath the mother. Young are weaned at around 18 months, and babies are often reared by more than one female in the group.