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Blue Monkey

Blue monkeys (Cercopithecus mitis) are not actually blue—they are more gray-colored, or olive. The blue in their name might come from the slight blue hue in the hair of their faces.

Size: Females weigh about 9 pounds; males can weigh up to 18 pounds. Their bodies are 20-26 inches long, and their tails are often just as long as their bodies. 

Life Span: Blue monkeys live about 20 years in the wild and even longer in zoos.

Color: Olive or gray

Continent: Africa 

Range: Central and East Africa from the upper Congo River basin to the volcano-laden East African Rift and south to northern Angola and Zambia

Habitat: Blue monkeys live in the tree tops of evergreen forests and bamboo forests, rarely coming down to the ground.

Food: They mostly eat fruits and leaves, but if food is scarce they will also eat slow-moving invertebrates. In zoos, they eat fruits, vegetables, and a special type of primate biscuit.

Reproduction: Gestation lasts five months and results in a single baby that is weaned at about six months. They reach maturity at about 3 years old and generally reproduce every three years.

Conservation: They are not endangered, but the destruction of tropical rainforests continues to threaten their habitat

Fun Facts: Blue monkeys are a social species that lives in groups of 10 to 40. These groups often form “alliances” with other species of monkeys, probably for added protection against predators like leopards, snakes, and birds of prey.