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Last updated on April 20, 2014 at 8:12 EDT

Rhesus Macaque

The rhesus macaque (Macaca mulatta), often called the rhesus monkey, is one of the best-known species of Old World monkeys. It is a typical macaque, common throughout Afghanistan to northern India and southern China. Adult male rhesus macaques measure approximately 20.87 in (53 cm) on average and weigh an average of 16.98 lb (7.7 kg). Females are smaller, averaging 18.5 in (47 cm) long and 11.68 lb (5.3 kg) in weight. They are brown or grey in color and have pink faces that are typically deprived of fur. Their tails are of medium length and average 8.14 to 9.02 in (20.7 and 22.9 cm). They typically have a lifespan of about 25 years.

It inhabits arid open areas. The rhesus macaque may be found in grasslands, woodlands, and in mountainous regions up to 8,202 ft (2,500 m) in elevation. It is a good swimmer and is said to enjoy the activity. The rhesus macaque is noted for its tendency to move from rural to urban areas. Some have come to rely on handouts or refuse from humans. It has become a pest in some areas, perceived as a possible risk to public health and safety.

A daily animal, the rhesus macaque lives in both tree and land. It is mostly herbivorous. It feeds on leaves and pine needles, roots, and the occasional insect or small animal. The monkey has specialized pouch-like cheeks, allowing it to temporarily horde its food. The gathered morsels are eaten sometime later, in safe surroundings.

Rhesus Macaque