There are at least 260 known monkey species in the world. These mammals are divided into New World -those found in the Americas - and Old World families - those native to Africa and Asia.
Characteristic of New and Old World monkeys are opposable thumbs. Key differences between the New and Old World families are the inclusion of prehensile tails, found in the New World, and cheek pouches for food storage and rump pads, both found in the Old World.
The smallest species, the New World pygmy marmoset, weighs just 4 ounces, while the largest is the Old World mandrill, which tips the scale at 77 pounds, according to University of Wisconsin researchers.Learn More
The pygmy marmoset is the smallest species of monkey in the world. Fully grown, they only weigh 4 to 5 ounces and are 6 inches long. The only primates smaller than pygmy marmosets are pygmy mouse lemurs and pygmy tarsiers.Full Answer >
Monkeys communicate through visual gestures and movements, sounds and smells. The most common form of communication amongst monkeys is the call, because the thick forest can make it difficult to see or smell other monkeys in the area.Full Answer >
The woolly spider monkey is a rare primate found only in the Atlantic forests of southeastern Brazil. At 17 to 25 inches and 18 to 20 pounds, it is the largest monkey in the Americas.Full Answer >
Proboscis monkeys primarily eat the leaves, fruit, seeds and shoots of mangrove trees. They supplement their diet with some insect larvae. Their diets vary by season, and are based on fruit between January and May and leaves throughout the rest of the year.Full Answer >