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Rainforest Animals at the Zoo: Titi monkey

When the Faces of the Rainforest exhibit opens later this summer at Roger Williams Park Zoo, you will notice a tiny little monkey with a long tail. This is the Titi monkey, native to South America, including Peru, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, and Brazil.

Titi monkeys spend the majority of their time in trees, and very rarely come down out of the lower levels of the canopy, or tree line. Instead, they live in forested areas, especially near lakes and rivers. They are most common in rainforests and near the Amazon River.

What makes Titi monkeys different

Titi monkeys have a number of behaviors that make them quite different from other types of monkeys.  They mate for life. They travel in small family groups with their children, and the father is the main caregiver for the babies – which is not common in most animal species. The male will carry the baby around most of the time, except when the mother nurses the child.


After a gestation period of 155 days (about five months), the female bears a single young monkey. The young are weaned after five months and are fully grown after a year. After two-to-three years, the offspring leave their family group in order to find a mate.

How Titi monkey’s live

Titi monkeys easily jump from branch to branch, earning them their German name, ‘jumping monkey.’ They sleep at night, but also take a midday nap. Early in the morning they vocalize synchronously most likely to announce their presence in their territory. Their grooming and communication is important for the co-operation of the group.

The diet of the Titi Monkey consists mainly of fruits, although they also eat leaves, insects, bird eggs, and small vertebrates. Their life expectancy is up to 12 years.


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