Bolivian Red Howler Monkey
Where do they live?
- Bolivian red howler monkeys are New World monkeys endemic to Bolivia, in west central South America. The habitats of red howler monkeys include various types of forests, but mostly tropical forests. They also enjoy woodland swamp areas. They spend much of their time in the higher parts of the trees, but make their way to the ground occasionally.
What do they look like?
- Male and female Bolivian red howler monkeys differ in size. This is difference in appearance is called sexual dimorphism.
- Males are about 20.6 -22.4 inches (52-57 cm) in height and weigh about 13-17 lbs. (6-8 kg).
- Females are a bit smaller at about 18.4- 19.6 inches (47-50 cm) and 10-14 lbs. (4.5-6 kg) in weight.
- Red howler monkeys are covered in a reddish-orange hair. A large fluff of hair surrounds their bare faces.
What do they eat?
- Howler monkeys are frugivores (fruit eaters) and folivores (leaf eaters). When food is in short supply they will eat roots, flowers, seeds, and even bark from trees.
How do they spend their day?
Why are they called Howler monkeys?
Howler monkeys have specialized throat sacs that enable them to produce very loud howls that can be heard for up to two miles. Males howl in the morning to awaken the forest, and they howl again before retiring for the night. Males from other troops respond so that all are aware of each other's locations and do not overlap territories. This maintains peace among troops.
- Bolivian red howler monkeys are listed as Least Concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN 2016). However, their their habitats are diminishing. Habitat loss is a problem for the future of many nonhuman primate species as forests are slashed and burned for agriculture and human development.
Video courtesy of ARKive.org
Written by Heidi Giancola, January 2016