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MONKEYS

-Niveditha

MonkeyMonkeys live all over the world and come in different shapes, sizes and colors. Monkeys are mammals. They are our closest relatives because they act just like humans. Monkeys are very intelligent and have opposable thumbs allowing them to use tools and play games. There are more than 260 different types of monkeys. They are separated into two large groups: Old world and new world. Old world monkeys live in Africa and Asia while new world monkeys live in the Americas. One difference between the two groups is that old world monkeys don’t have grasping tails but, new world monkeys do. Also, old world monkeys’ nostrils are small, curved and set close together while most new world monkeys have round nostrils set far apart.

Diet

Most people think monkeys only eat bananas but, that isn’t really true. Monkeys are omnivores. This means they eat meat and plant based foods. Majority of the monkeys eat nuts, fruits, seeds and flowers. Some of the monkeys also eat meat in the form of bird’s eggs, small lizards, insects and spiders.

Habits & Habitat

Most monkeys live on trees but, some monkeys live in savannas or mountain areas. Monkey tribes keep moving to find more food so, one location isn’t home for very long. Monkeys are very social animals. Groups of monkeys are called tribes, missions, troops or cartloads. A troop will work close together to take care of the young and little monkeys in the group. The monkeys also like to play, cuddle and protect each other. The strongest, bravest and largest male monkeys are the leader of the group. In monkey genus groups (a large group of monkeys like a subfamily) that practice polygyny, the leader will mate with multiple females.

Offspring

The pregnancy periods for monkeys Vary depending on the genus. For example, the pregnancy for a rhesus monkey is 164 days. Baboons have a similar pregnancy period of around 187 days. Chimpanzees on the other hand, have a much longer pregnancy period of around 237 days according to the San Jose state university. Once born, baby monkeys are mostly cared by their mother. If the monkey is single and doesn’t have siblings, the baby monkey may be cared by both the parents. Lots of times, a young monkey rides on its mother’s back or sometimes it hangs from its mother’s neck. A baby monkey is considered an adult between four and five years old. Also, a monkey’s lifespan is about 10 to 50 years but, some monkeys have a shorter lifespan due to diseases.

In conclusion, monkeys are very interesting creatures and we should learn more about them to increase our knowledge.

Reference: http://www.livescience.com/27944-monkeys.html

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