White-throated Guenon, Cercopithecus erythrogaster

The white-throated guenon (Cercopithecus erythrogaster) is also known as the red-bellied guenon or the red-bellied monkey. It can be found in Benin and Nigeria, in habitats including rainforests and tropical areas. It holds the two subspecies known as the red-bellied guenon and the Nigerian white-throated guenon.

The white-throated guenon can be found in small groups of up to five monkeys, although larger groups of up to thirty have been reported, as well as solitary males. It is an arboreal species, spending most of its time in the trees. Males can weigh up to 9.9 pounds and females weighing slightly less at an average of 8.8 pounds. It feeds on insects, but crops and leaves also make up large portions of its diet.

Until 1988 when a small group was discovered near the Niger River, it was thought that the white-throated guenon was extinct. Before this time, these monkeys were overhunted for their red coats. Today, their numbers continue to dwindle, and this is due partly because each female can only produce one baby. The lands in which they reside are protected as a holy land, and so logging and hunting are both outlawed. The white-throated guenon appears on the IUCN Red List with a conservation status of “Vulnerable”.

Image Caption: White-throated Guenon. Credit: Joseph Smit/Wikipedia