Grooming is such an important part of social bonding among primates, that this little rescued vervet monkey couldn’t resist when she saw me grooming this rescued blue monkey! These monkeys lost their mothers when they were very young, and are being rehabilitated at a Wildlife Center, where they’ll stay until they have found a troop of their own, and can be released back into the wild. The Blue Monkey (Cercopithecus mitis), also known as Samango, belongs to the Cercopithecidae family of Old World Monkeys, the largest of all primate families, comprising 138 species of primates. The family includes the mandrill, drill, baboons, colobus, macaques, among many others. The genus Cercopithecus, generally referred to as Guenons, comprises 26 species, and 17 subspecies of Blue Monkey are recognized: Cercopithecus mitis opisthostictus, Cercopithecus mitis boutourlinii, Cercopithecus mitis albogularis, Cercopithecus mitis albotorquatus, Cercopithecus mitis stuhlmanni, Cercopithecus mitis doggetti, Cercopithecus mitis moloneyi, Cercopithecus mitis heymansi, Cercopithecus mitis erythrarchus, Cercopithecus mitis zammaronoi, Cercopithecus mitis kolbi, Cercopithecus mitis monoides, Cercopithecus mitis mitis, Cercopithecus mitis kandti, Cercopithecus mitis francescae, Cercopithecus mitis schoutedeni and Cercopithecus mitis labiatus. This species is widespread across Central, Southern and East Africa. It can be found in many different types of forest, such as lowland and montane tropical moist forest, riverine and gallery forest, delta forest, bamboo forest, sand forest, and even secondary forest, logged forest and thickets. Blue Monkeys are diurnal and arboreal, and live in groups of up to 40 individuals. They may form alliances with other monkey species, for added protection. They are mostly frugivorous and folivorous, so their diet consists mostly of fruits and leaves, but they also feed on slugs and worms.brIn spite of being widespread, this species suffers from habitat loss and hunting. The Vervet Monkey (Chlorocebus pygerythrus) is an Old World monkey, which means that it belongs to the Cercopithecidae family, the largest of all primate families, comprising 138 species of primates. The term “vervet” is used to refer to all members of the Chlorocebus genus, although it is still debated whether there are several species or only one, with several subspecies. They are native to the African continent, and can be found as far north as Egypt, and as far south as South Africa. They occupy savanna, open woodland, and forest-grassland mosaic, preferably close to rivers, being generally absent from desert areas and deep forest. It’s a common and abundant species; flexible and easily adapted to secondary and highly fragmented vegetation, including cultivated areas and rural and urban environments, where it is often considered a pest, which gets them hunted and shot, causing many babies to become orphaned. In some areas, they become bushmeat. Vervet Monkeys live in large troops of up to 38 individuals, with one dominant male. The females are usually related to one another, but many unrelated males may be present. With a life-span of 10 to 11 years, females become sexually mature at age four, and males at age five. They breed from April to June, and a single offspring is born five months later.
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