Guianan Squirrel Monkey

ANIMAL:
Guianan Squirrel Monkey   Saimiri sciureus

Type of Animal:
New World Monkey

Habitat:
Primary forest, secondary forest, gallery forest, forest edge, river’s edge, marshland, swamps, savanna

Location(s):
Guiana Shield, N Brazil, S Venezuela

Appearance:
Gray to orange to olive fur or mix of colors, yellow-orange arms, white belly, pinkish face, black muzzle, white arches over eyes, gray tail w/ black at end, olive/olive-gray crown

Food/Diet:
Insects, seeds, fruit, leaves, flowers, gum, berries, shoots, nectar, nuts, buds, insect larvae, eggs, spiders, lizards, bats, birds, snails, crabs, tree frogs

Status in Wild:
Stable

Conservation:
Breeding in zoos & wildlife parks

Lifestyle:
Troops range from 12-100 monkeys

Additional Info:

Called:
Male
Female
Young: Infant
Group: Troop

Weight:
Male: 1.1875-3.0625 lbs
Female: 1.1875-2.625 lbs
Young: 10 oz

Gestation:
5-5.5 months

Life Span:
20 years

Height:
Male: 0.82-1.22 ft
Female: 0.82-1.12 ft

Body Length:
Male: 0.82-1.22 ft
Female: 0.82-1.12 ft

Tail Length:
Male: 1.167-1.583 ft
Female: 1.167-1.3 ft

Main predators are felids, raptors, snakes, & crocodilians.
 
Females sexually mature at 16 months, males at 2 years.
 
Like most monkeys, they’re active during the day (diurnal). 80% of day spent foraging.
 
Like many primate species, allomothering fairly common among this species, w/ females not mom helping care for young. Females often take care of other females’ young.
 
Often seen w/ larger monkeys like Brown/Tufted Capuchins & Red-Backed Bearded Sakis.
 
Long tail primarily used for balance.
 
When sleeping, they bend forward while tails curled between legs, covering shoulders.
 
Like most New World Monkeys, thumbs not completely opposable.
 
Troops sometimes fight back against predators in mob attacks.
 
Play important role in seed dispersal due to diet.
 
Sometimes killed by farmers due to raiding agricultural crops.

Fun Fact(s):
While sometimes kept as pets, they don’t make good pets.
 
Excellent eyesight being able to see colors-handy for discerning fruits.
 
Can take horizontal leaps of as long as 6.5 ft.
 
Have very large brains in comparison to body size.
 
At least 25 calls have been identified-some warning of danger, some for keeping in contact, & some used in play, among others.
 
Don’t just scratch when itchy-also scratch when anxious, especially when separated from other troop members.
 
Spread urine on hands/feet when moving about in trees to leave scent trail.
Guianan Squirrel Monkeys, stock photo

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