Spider Monkeys The most amazing climbers in the rain forest


The spider monkeys aren't too picky. In the wild they will eat fruit, nuts, seeds, insects, roots, leaves, birds eggs, bark, and honey. In captivity they are fed celery, bananas, raisins, apples, oranges, carrots, monkey chow, dog chow, lettuce, and wheat bread.

Some food they eat in the wild.
Some of the foods spider monkeys eat in captivity.


The habitat of the spider monkey is the rain forest. The rain forest is a forest that gets 200 centimeters of rain a year and is found on Central and South America, Africa and Australia. There are 4 layers in a rain forest. The 4 layers are the Forest Floor, the lowest. The next is the Understory, the next is the Canopy, and the highest is the Emergent layer. They live in a tropical rain forest. They live on the continents of Central America and South America they also live in Mexico.

This is what the canopy layer looks like.

Is it Endangered?

The spider monkey is endangered due to habitat destruction. There are 7 subspecies of spider monkey. They range between vulnerable and critically endangered.

Ruined habitat (right) spider monkey in captivity (middle) spider monkey in the wild (left)


Did you know female spider monkeys are taller and heavier than males? How much more? Males weigh on average weigh 3.8 pounds and are 38-48 centimeters long. Females on the other hand on average weigh 4.4 pounds and are 42-57 centimeters.

Female with baby
Male in tree


Spider monkeys have 6 main predators they must watch out for. Those predators are eagles, raptors, jaguars, puma, ocelot and large snakes.

Spider monkey predators

How does it move?

The spider monkey has 2 main ways to move and one way most never have done. The two main ways are brachiating and climbing. The other way is walking.

Spider monkey walking (left). Spider monkey brachiating (right).

Parenting Behavior

The parenting behavior of spider monkeys is like humans. The mothers take care of their baby for 3-4 years. A mother has a baby every 3-4 years. The babies cling to their mother's underside for about half a year. The babies after half a year will cling to their mother's back until they are 4. The young monkeys stay close to their moms but as they grow they become more independent. Something a mother will do as her baby grow up is pull branches together to make it easier for them to climb.

Mom and baby

What do you call a group and individuals?

Spider monkeys have very simple names. Males are called males. Females are called females. Babies are called infants and a group is called a troupe (troop).

Female (top left), male (top right), infant (bottom left) troupe (bottom right)

What family is it in?

There are different scientific names. They are listed below.

Class- Mammalia or mammal

Order- primates or humans, monkeys and apes

Family- Atelidae

The Scientific Name

The scientific name of a spider monkey is Ateles fusciceps. Why does each animal have a scientific name? Each animal has a scientific name so no matter what language you speak you can say the name and others will understand what it means.

Did You Know?

Did you know spider monkeys have prehensile tails? That means they can use their tale like an extra hand.

Did you know spider monkeys don't have thumbs?

Did you know spider monkeys live in groups of 30-40 monkeys most of the time but will break up into groups of 2-8 during the day?

Did you know spider monkeys can swing through the air holding onto a branch with just their tails?

Did you know almost all spider monkeys spend their whole lives in the trees?

Did you know spider monkeys can live to be 22 years old?

Did you know people are hunting spider monkeys and destroying their habitat and they could go extinct?

Did you know spider monkeys have the capability to sit criss-cross?

Monkey sitting criss-cross in a tree.

Did you know spider monkeys can make facial expressions?

Angry spider monkey (right) and surprised spider monkey (left)

What does it look like

Spider monkeys have small round-ish heads with very long arms and legs. Most have medium sized round eyes and a long tail. It has a medium-thick coat of fur. They have short round muzzles. Their muzzles have little or no fur.


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