Lion Tailed Macaque Facts
- Firstly, the Lion Tailed Macaque is a rather small species of macaque. The animal also ranks among the rarest and most highly endangered of all primates.
- Secondly, a recent investigation by the IUCN places its estimated numbers at no more than 3,000 still remaining in the wild.
- In addition, its areas of habitation continue to shrink, due to the spread of agriculture, and the construction of reservoirs.
- Further, the average lifespan of the Lion Tailed Macaque is approximately 20 years in the wild.
Lion Tailed Macaque Physical Description
The fur of the Lion Tailed Macaque primarily shows black in color. The exception is the large, silvery-white mane surrounding the head. This also extends from the cheeks to the chin.
Along with the tuft on the end of its tail, this forms the character from which its name derives. The face remains completely hairless, but the skin also appears dark black.
Both genders reach about the same size, and adults average roughly 24 in (60 cm) in head and body length. However, the oversized tail averages about 10 in (25 cm) in length.
Adults also average around 22 lb (10 kg) in weight.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Mammalia
- Order: Primates
- Family: Cercopithecodae
- Genus: Macaca
- Species: M. silenus
Lion Tailed Macaque Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
The fascinating Lion Tailed Macaque also lives only within a small mountain range on the coast of southern India. Sadly, its only remaining completely undisturbed habitat exists in the Silent Valley National Park, in Kerala, in Asia.
Within its range, the Lion Tailed Macaque inhabits the upper canopy of tropical evergreen forests. Individuals also spend the majority of their lives in the trees, and rarely descend to the ground.
Unlike other types of macaque, it avoids contact with humans. In addition, it remains a territorial animal and lives in small groups.
These typically average between 10-20 individuals. Most commonly these groups consist of only a few males and numerous females.
This animal also has an omnivorous diet and primarily consumes fruit, buds, leaves, insects, and small vertebrates.