Sunday, May 13, 2007

The Monkey with the Red Face

Natalie1 suggested2 that I write about the White Uakari. The only problem was the species, the Bald Uakari, was listed as “near threatened” on the IUCN redlist. I’d like it to be at least “vulnerable” before I write about it. But then I looked at the page for the White Uakari subspecies, and, lo and behold, it’s vulnerable.
Image by Luiz Claudio Marigo

Bald Uakari3 are a bunch of red-faced, cat-sized monkeys. I’ll get to the face later. The White Uakari (Cacajao calvus calvus) is the subspecies of which has a white coat. Other notable Uakaris are the red one, the Ucayli one, and Novae’s one, all of which are listed as vulnerable. I’m not quite sure how each subspecies can be vulnerable while the species is not, but IUCN said something about changing definitions of “vulnerable.”

Alright, back to the face. The deep Amazon of western Brazil, where the White Uakaris live, is a malaria hot-zone. Pale faces are a symptom of malaria. So, having a red face is the Uakari’s equivalent to a six-pack: I’m so exceedingly healthy, you just gotta mate with me. Redder faces get more mates, and the paler faces, well, get malaria.

The rest of the White Uakari is, well, white. It has a shortish (for a monkey), non-prehensile tail. They live in large troops, up to 100, though there are smaller subgroups within each troop. They are foragers, living mostly on fruits, with snacks of buds, leaves, and bugs. With the thickness of the Amazonian rainforest, they have little need to land on the ground, and spend most of their lives in the treetops.

Being a rainforest species, no one will be surprised when I tell you that their major concern is habitat loss. Human hunting also occurs, which certainly can’t help. Conservation, therefore, is still an issue. Though, as much as I harp on them, the WWF is doing their part to help. They alone are a major driving source behind rainforest protection.

1Who has linked to me for quite some time now, it’s only fair that she gets a link back.
2Phantom Midge, look out for a Sengi post soon.
3Which I just now learned is pronounced wuh-KAR-ee. I had been horribly mispronouncing it my entire life.


Anonymous said...

You know, kinda looks a little like my Uncle when he got a bad sunburn at the beach (only, uh, without the fur).....
Shock the monkey, indeed!

Anonymous said...

these monkeys are the ugglist monkeys i have ever seen! there like perverts with red faces and it looks like it's head is poking out of a another monkeys butt!get a life godddddd!

Nyssa & Mahriya

Anonymous said...

it doesnt matter how ugly the monkey is it is endangered just like all od the rest of them...should we not care if you are ugly?

Unknown said...

I bet most of you believe in Evolution. You know monkey to man stuff. So with that being said and using Darwin's logic every time a baby is born a monkey has to become extinct! Gee if you want to save the monkey quit having babies!!!! SAVE a MONKEY....Neuter and Spay a Human!!!

Anonymous said...

ha ha..funny monkey

Anonymous said...

what are wwf doing to protec the red uakaris