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Flora and Fauna | 3 min read

A pair of Amazon monkeys you will fall in love with

The Ecuadorian Amazon is home to 16 different species of monkeys, this being the most biodiverse spot on the planet. Although all live naturally in the Yasuní National Park, their physical appearance and peculiar habits distinguish them from each other.
Here are two of them, which will become your favorites:

Squirrel monkey

Napo Cultural Center Squirrel monkey in a tree in Yasuni National Park

The squirrel monkey can be found walking at ground level, which already implies a great difference with the rest of the Amazon monkeys. They travel long distances in groups during the day, climbing and jumping on the trees around them. When they go up to the cups, they mainly do it in search of food.

Squirrel monkeys prefer to eat fruit and insects. Thanks to their small and agile bodies, they are able to easily climb to the ends of the branches to capture the fruits. Occasionally, these monkeys also feed on leaves, seeds, arthropods, bird eggs and some small vertebrates, such as tiny bats and small birds.

They are very gregarious and like to stay together both to hunt, and at night to rest. They sleep together to protect each other from the predators that are around, who go out to prowl at night. Among its main threats are snakes and big cats, among other wild animals.

The height of the male squirrel monkey is 26-27cm tall, while the female becomes taller, reaching 28-37cm. They live between 20 and 25 years.

The average squirrel monkeys are short-haired and gray, while on their back and arm they turn a yellowish color. A white eye-mask stain highlights his dark eyes, a white coat that highlights his eyes and a dark gray mouth. Its non-prehensile tail, between 30-40cm helps them keep their balance when moving between trees.

Being quite small, their size can make them vulnerable to predators. However, what they lack in size, they compensate in quantity. Squirrel monkey herds can be composed of up to 30 individuals. But there are very few territorial disputes between different groups, as they tend to avoid each other. To mark their territories of other species, they rub the skin and tail with urine to leave the smell behind.

Common squirrel monkeys are listed in Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), which guarantees that trade must be controlled. They also live in a number of protected areas.

Golden-mantle Tamarin

Napo Cultural Center Golden-mantle tamarin monkey in a tree in the Yasuni National Park

The Golden-mantle Tamarin is another species that you can easily observe in the walks through the tropical jungle. Of diurnal and arboreal habits, like most of the monkeys with which it shares habitat, this beautiful creature will go out to meet him as he jumps from branch to branch in search of fruits, flowers, dry leaves, insects and tree sap to feed. It prefers rainforests, always green, and the heights of treetops. You will rarely see it on the ground.

The colors of the Tamarins are one of its most fascinating characteristics. Their bodies, at breast height, are orange / gold, while towards the area of their hind legs, the fur turns dark until it reaches almost black. His head is also covered in black fur, but with a large white spot around his mouth, which gives them a unique look.

The Golden-mantle Tamarins are gregarious animals and have a defined social hierarchy in a group of two to eight members. One of the main curiosities about these animals is that, although they live in groups, like the other Amazonian monkeys, in this case, they are dominated by the females, which are typically accompanied by multiple males. The social hierarchy in the groups of Golden-mantle Tamarins is determined by the marking odors.

There is not enough information in the scientific community about these tamarins.

The length of gestation and lactation periods, the seasons of reproduction and intervals, and the time to sexual maturity, are unknown. You can see if there are other members of the species, but there is no determining information about it.

However, it is known that the Saguinus tripartitus reproduces between April and October and that the age to sexual maturity is between 15 and 24 months for this species. According to records, the Golden-mantle Tamarins live for about six years.

The species is listed as "almost threatened" by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources. Its population has not yet been affected by humans, but due to the findings of oil in its habitat, the area could suffer high rates of deforestation, which would cause its population to decrease by 25 percent in the next 18 years.

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Vive el lugar más biodiverso del planeta, junto a una ancestral cultura kichwa en el Parque Nacional Yasuní.

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