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Facts About Howler Monkeys

Updated on March 4, 2016

Facts About Howler Monkeys

Howler Monkeys are handsome. What more do you need to know?

Hi, my name is Harold. At least that is what the human that interviewed me for this article called me. She wanted to learn some facts about howler monkeys, straight from the howler's mouth. She is the one that named me Harold. Ridiculous.Black Howler Monkey - Deanna Keahey

Anyway, she's a nice lady and I told her a lot about howler monkeys. She loves howler monkeys and she wants you to love them too! I already love howler monkeys. We are the greatest monkeys in the world. New world OR old world.

Top Facts About Howler Monkeys

Learn all about howler monkeys. According to my source, they are the most handsome, most loud, most wonderful monkey in the world. New world and old world.

  1. Howler monkeys live in Central and South America. This makes them New World monkeys. An example of an Old World monkey is a baboon from Africa.
  2. Howler monkeys are loud. Really, really loud. They are the loudest land animal on earth. Howler monkeys howl in the early morning and evenings as a way to inform other monkeys that they are there, that they are awesome, and that they will defend their territory. They can be heard miles away. They also howl at other times of the day.
  3. Howler monkeys, like most other New World monkeys, have a prehensile tail. That is a fancy way to say that their tail can grip branches, hold items, and generally function as a fifth limb. No Old World monkeys have a prehensile tail.
  4. Howler monkeys live in the treetops and rarely come to the ground. They don't need to since they obtain most of he water they need from the leaves and fruit they eat. They sometimes find stored water high up in the trees that they can drink also. They will come to the ground for water during dry spells.
  5. Howler monkeys live in troops of 15-20 monkeys. The troop is led by an experienced male and contains a variety of males, females, and young. The leader is usually the biggest male. He gets his choice of everything, from food to mates.
  6. Howler monkeys groom each others fur. Usually the females groom their offspring's fur, as well as the fur of other relatives. While this grooming is important to get rid of stray bark, insects, etc, the animals also enjoy the attention from each other. It is kind of like a person getting a massage. It is a soothing interaction.
  7. Howler monkeys do not live in a specific place. They are constantly moving, albeit slowly, to new territory. They forage for tender leaves, and then move onto a new area.
  8. Howler monkeys are the largest monkeys in the New World. They stand about 2 feet high. Old World monkeys are larger, but howler monkeys like Harold will tell you that size doesn't matter!

Howler Monkey Books - For Kids and Adults

Now that you know the facts about howler monkeys, I am sure you can't help loving them. Check out some of the howler monkey books for kids that are for sale. I should say, books for kids and grown-ups. The kiddie books are always more interesting and have better pictures.

Excellent Video of Red Howler Monkeys - Wild Red Howler Monkeys

Watch this great clip of red howler monkeys in the wild. They are absolutely beautiful. Pay close attention to how they move from branch to branch and over vines. They use their prehensile tail to grip and for balance. At the end one of the monkeys looks directly at the videographer. It is an extremely intense gaze. They are so graceful!

This is a professionally shot video from BBCEarth.

Video of Howling Red Howler Monkey - Captive Monkey

The previous clip had stunning video but there wasn't an opportunity to hear the howler monkey calls. View this video to see Pepe the Howler Monkey calling. Keep in mind this is ONE monkey and imagine being in the rain forest with a whole troop over your head. That would be so intense! It is likely you would get poop thrown at you if they were over you head too!

Howler monkeys typically howl every morning , afternoon and nighttime. This is how they let other howler monkey troops know where they are. They do not like to mix or fights break out. They will also howl an alarm when predators are around.

Harpy Eagle
Harpy Eagle

What are the dangers to Howler Monkeys?

Are Howler Monkeys endangered?

Unfortunately, we are one of the biggest dangers. Howler monkeys live in the rainforests of Southern Mexico all the way down to Southern Brazil. Through logging, deforestation, and capture for pets or zoos humans are responsible for a lot of the problems that howler monkeys face. These monkeys are also hunted for as food (bushmeat).

Fortunately, howler monkeys, as a whole, are not endangered. They may be endangered in certain areas of their natural habitat.

CC License - BirdPhotosThe main predator howler monkeys have to worry about are harpy eagles. They are huge birds that often prey on young howler monkeys, and even adults when they are feeling bold. Harpy eagles have up to a 6.5 feet wingspan. They are one of the largest and fiercest eagles in the world. They think howler monkeys are delicious.

The howler monkeys also have to be wary of jaguars, but they are not the jaguars' main prey.

Howler Monkey Love Poll

Red Howler Monkey
Red Howler Monkey

red howler monkey - CC License - Feballard

Now that you know some facts about howler monkeys, I hope you think they are awesome, too!

Do you love howler monkeys?

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    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      It's not just a monkey it's awesome

    • profile image

      Aunt-Mollie 4 years ago

      This is a great article. I never knew much about this specie before. In all fairness to the monkeys, I know humans who howl, too.

    • greenspirit profile image

      poppy mercer 5 years ago from London

      What fascinating animals. Do they ever whisper, mumble or talk quietly to each other, or do they shout all the time? Love to Harold.

    • profile image

      sherioz 5 years ago

      When on a trip in northern Guatemala, we walked around a temple area early early in the morning and heard what sounded like jaguars fighting. Stupidly going off to check out the sight, holding only sticks we picked up off the ground, we found when we got there that they were howler monkeys. They are amazing!!!

    • LiteraryMind profile image

      Ellen Gregory 6 years ago from Connecticut, USA

      Nice lens. Thanks for introducing me to the howler monkey

    • vincente lm profile image

      vincente lm 6 years ago

      I wonder if there are Howler Monkeys in Sri Lanka. We are currently on this incredible island and our house is constantly surrounded by Toque Macaques. So cute and not shy at all!

    • profile image

      Lindrus 6 years ago

      Thanks for teaching me something new! I didn't know anything about Howler monkeys before. Great lens!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      I never knew much about Howler Monkeys before. They look like incredible creatures, but then I love all animals. :)

    • Akitajitsu profile image

      Jen 6 years ago from California

      Interesting info on howler monkeys. I had never heard one before- interesting sound they make!

    • profile image

      entertainmentev 6 years ago

      Howler Monkey's are so cool! Great information on your lens about them.

    • LouisaDembul profile image

      LouisaDembul 6 years ago

      Will Harold be offended if I say he is a "cute" howler monkey?

    • WriterJanis2 profile image

      WriterJanis2 6 years ago

      Very well put together.

    • flycatcherrr profile image

      flycatcherrr 6 years ago

      Heheh, not sure "handsome" is the first word that leaps to mind, but Howler Monkeys sure are interesting little creatures, and I enjoyed learning more about them.

    • dotpattern profile image

      Pat Moire 6 years ago from West Village, New York City

      Pepe cracks me up! Red Howler Monkeys are cool.