Female spider monkey with her infant foraging on Brosimum alicastrum leaves at Runaway Creek Nature Reserve
Note the infant's pink fingers- at Runaway Creek, about 15% of the spider monkeys are born with patches of pink pigmentation on their hands and/or feet.
The main threat to the endangered Central American Spider Monkey (Ateles geoffroyi yucatanensis) is the pet trade and deforestation.
The spider monkey has long thin arms, legs and tail, its body is 3-5 feet long and can weigh up to 20 lbs. It is a diurnal and social animal living in groups of 20-42 individuals inhabiting the rainforests of Belize.
It prefers the tree tops. Its prehensile tail, used as a fifth limb, supports its life of swinging between trees looking for fruits, nuts, leaves and flowers. As a frugivorous primate, feeding on fruits, the spider monkey plays a vital role of seed dispersal across the forest landscape.
Spider monkeys require a wide, unbroken forest to thrive. They would defend their troops, sometimes up to 40 individuals, with barks, other projected vocalizations and shaking tree branches.
Spider monkeys are good indicators of healthy forest cover. You can often spot these primates hanging around the tree tops.
Photograph by Kayla Hartwell
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