Monday, February 20, 2012

Golden Snub-nosed Monkey

Rhinopithecus roxellana
The Golden Snub-nosed Monkey is found only in a small, temperate, mountainous section of central China. They live at altitudes as high as 10,800ft, and can withstand cold temperatures better than just about any other primate species. Their snub-nose is actually a trait to help them deal with the cold; a longer nose would be more susceptible to frostbite!

Golden Snub-nosed Monkeys spend a majority of their time up in the trees. Their diet consists primarily of Lichens, but they'll also eat leaves, fruits, and seeds as well.

The species is highly social. During the summer they may come together in troops that number into the hundreds. During the winter the groups are much smaller, but still number 20-30 individuals. Within these bands are smaller family units that consist of a dominant male and a handful of females and their offspring. It is actually the females that initiate mating; the let the male know that they are ready with postures and signals. Usually only one infant is born after a gestation of 6 months, but twins sometimes occur.

Golden Snub-nosed monkeys, along with the other species of Snub-nosed Monkey, are endangered. This is because of habitat loss, and because of the practice of clearing dead trees. Lichens grow much better on dead trees, so the removal of this food source has a big impact on the Monkeys.

IUCN Status : Endangered
Location : China
Size : Body Length up to 30in (76cm)
Classification : Phylum : Chordata -- Class : Mammalia -- Order : Primates
Family : Cercopithecidae -- Genus : Rhinopithecus -- Species : R. roxellana

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