Black howler monkey

Alouatta caraya
Black howler monkeys This monkey's howl can be heard up to 5km away
Type mammal
Size 75cm
Weight 5.5kg
Diet herbivore
  • Summary

    Howler monkeys are so called because of their amazing howling calls which can be heard by humans up to 5km away. They tend to howl at the beginning and end of the day. The calls are so loud due to a special voice box and pouch in the throat that amplifies the sound.

    Male howler monkeys use their loud howls to defend their spot.

    Despite being called black howler monkeys, only the male is actually black - the female is blonde in colour.

  • Dietary

    Howler monkeys are herbivores. In the Zoo, they are given fresh leaves, mixed fruit and vegetables, granary bread, nuts, sunflower seeds and specially made primate dietary supplements.

    In the wild, the monkeys use their loud howls to defend food in their territory. Almost all of their time is spent high in the trees, feeding on various sorts of leaves.

  • Habitat

    In the wild, these monkeys live at the top of trees in tropical rainforests or tropical dry forests across South America - Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay.


  • Conservation

    Whilst black howler monkeys are not officially threatened with extinction - they are classified as a species of Least Concern - as with many other species in South America their habitat is being steadily destroyed.

    Together with European zoos, Bristol Zoo is maintaining a population of black howler monkeys in human care.

    IUCN Red List species link

  • Did you know...

    You find our black howler monkeys in the South American mixed species exhibit, which they share with our armadillos.

    The mix of different species is enriching to the animals. Both species get on very well, they are acive at different times of the day and they share space as they would potentially in the wild.

    Our male black howler monkey is very territorial and protective, not only of his howler females, but of the armadillos as well!

  • Where to find us at Bristol Zoo

    You can find our black howler monkeys inside Monkey Jungle, opposite Gorilla Island

    Bristol Zoo Gardens Map

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