These are the 4 types of Woolly Monkeys you can find in South America, one of them endemic to Peru.
The South American Woolly Monkey is an adorable primate that belongs to the Atelidae family (a family of 5 different kinds of New World monkeys). Located in Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Venezuela and of course Peru, there isn’t just one type of woolly monkey, but four.
1. Yellow-tailed Woolly Monkey
The rare Yellow-tailed Woolly Monkey is one of four species, and is unique to Peruvian Andes in the department of San Martin. Unfortunately, this species is critically endangered, categorized as such by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). This species has a slow reproductive rate which doesn’t help their survival. Another reason for its status is the loss of its natural habitat.
2. Gray Woolly Monkey
The Gray Woolly Monkey is mostly found in Peru, Brazil and Bolivia. Its characteristics are dark gray in color with dark skin and thick coats. These monkeys can be found living in cloud forests with a diet that consists of fruit and, when fruit is limited, leaves. Female Gray Woolly monkey’s are often hunted and their young sold as pets, but the monkeys are also hunted for food. Thankfully, they are now being protected in most national parks.
3. Brown Woolly Monkey
Brown Woolly Monkey is also referred to as the common Woolly Monkey. As mentioned above, they have characteristics such as round heads and medium-sized bodies.
4. Colombian Woolly Monkey
The last Woolly we will be talking about is the Colombian Woolly Monkey. This species has been around for about 500 years, yet is critically endangered. With the same build and social behaviors as other woollies, the Colombian variety likes to stay in large groups known as troops.
All of the aforementioned Woolly Monkeys have a life span of about 24-30 years. Female monkeys also have a pregnancy duration of 7 to 7 1/2 months.
Cover photo: Andina
This article by Natasha Clay has been updated from its original publication on April 29, 2016.
Now that you're here:
We're asking you, our reader, to make a contribution in support of our digital guide in order to keep informing, updating and inspiring people to visit Peru. Why now? In our near 20-year journey as the leading English-language source on travel in Peru, we've had our fair share of ups and downs-but nothing quite like the challenges brought forth in the first quarter of 2020.
By adapting to the changing face of the tourism and travel industry (on both local and international levels), we have no doubt we will come out stronger-especially with the support of our community. Because you will travel again, and we will be ready to show you the best of Peru.
Your financial support means we can keep sharing the best of Peru through high-quality stories, videos and insights provided by our dedicated team of contributors and editors based in Peru. And of course, We are here to answer your questions and help whenever you need us.
As well, it makes possible our commitment to support local and small businesses that make your visit an unforgettable one. Your support will help the people working in these industries get back on their feet once the world allows us to make our dream of enjoying everything Peru has to offer a reality again-from its mouthwatering gastronomy, thriving Amazon and archaeological wonders such as Machu Picchu.
Together, we will find a way through this. As a member of our community, your contribution, however big or small, is valuable.