Assam Macaque, Macaca assamensis

The Assam macaque (Macaca assamensis) is a species of Old World monkey that can be found in Southeast and South Asia. Its range includes Nepal, while its subspecies occupy larger ranges. The eastern Assamese macaque holds a range that includes Bhutan, Assam, Mizoram, and areas of Myanmar and Tibet. The western Assamese macaque holds a range that includes Sikkim, Assam, and areas of West Bengal and areas of Bangladesh. This species resides in varying habitats depending upon the area of its range including montane, arid, tropical, and subtropical forests at elevations between 660 and 5,900 feet.

The Assam macaque reaches an average body length between 20.1 and 28.9 feet, with a tail length between 5.9 and 12 inches and a weight between 11 and 22 pounds. The fur of this species is dark brown to yellowish-grey in color, with lighter fur occurring along the shoulders, arms, and head. The head holds a dark patch of fur that extends from the cheeks to the back of the ears.

Although the Assam macaque is an arboreal primate, it also moves about on the ground. It is active during the daytime hours and it is thought to live in groups between 13 and 35 individuals, comprised of more females than males. This species consumes a large variety of food including invertebrates, leaves, and fruits, but they have been found to primarily consume plant materials.

The Assam macaque is threatened by habitat loss caused by logging and human encroachment, as well as hunting and hybridization with other monkey species that share its range. This species is protected by law in all areas of its range and is listed in CITES Appendix II. It appears on the IUCN Red List with a conservation status of “Near Threatened.”

Image Caption: Assam Macaque. Credit: J. Patrick Fischer/Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 3.0)