What kinds of monkeys live in Cambodia?
If you visit Cambodia, it’s only natural to ask yourself the above question. I mean, who doesn’t want to see monkeys!?
Luckily, there are quite a few species you should be able to find. So, keep reading to learn how to identify each primate. Plus, you are going to learn some fun and interesting facts. Pictures and range maps are also included!
13 monkey species that live in Cambodia:
#1. Long-tailed Macaque
- Macaca fascicularis
Also known as the Crab-eating Macaque or Cynomolgus Monkey.
- Adults are 38-55 cm (15-22 in) long with tails that reach 40-65 cm (16-26 in).
- They have gray or brown coats that grow paler on the underparts and a white strip of hair on the upper lip that looks like a mustache.
Long-tailed Macaques make their home in shrublands, lowland rainforests, and coastal forests. But watch out; these cheeky monkeys in Cambodia might sometimes raid farms or dumpsters for a snack. They’re even known to steal food right from your hand!
Speaking of snacks, these monkeys in Cambodia aren’t picky.
They love fruit, but they’ll also forage for roots, leaves, and small critters. Plus, they’re super smart! They peel sweet potatoes with their teeth, wash their food before eating, and use rocks to bash clams, crabs, and oysters open.
Long-tailed Macaques are social creatures. They live in groups of 20 to 100, mostly made up of females and their young. When the males grow up, they venture out to find a new group of their own. Fights within a group are frequent, but these clever monkeys in Cambodia usually reconcile afterward to keep the peace.
#2. Rhesus Macaque
- Macaca mulatta
Also known as the Rhesus Monkey.
- Adults are 47-53 cm (19-21 in) long, and their tails are 21-23 cm (8-9 in).
- They have bare pink faces and large ears.
- Their fur coats are pale auburn or grayish brown.
These monkeys in Cambodia thrive in various habitats, from grasslands to wooded regions and tropical forests. If you’re lucky enough to come across a troop, you might see up to 200 individuals hanging out, even in urban areas. You’ll quickly notice that Rhesus Macaques are energetic and social! Always on the move, they love to play on the ground and in the trees. However, they become lazier during the hotter seasons.
When it’s snack time, these monkeys love to chow down on fruits, roots, bark, and even bugs! They’ve got cheek pouches that act like little food storage units. Just be wary of Rhesus Macaques that comb through garbage cans. They might be a little too comfortable around humans and try to snag your snacks!
Unfortunately, rival groups of these monkeys in Cambodia tend to be violent. They’ll even attempt to kill each other upon their first meeting. Fighting within groups is also common. And once they’ve had a conflict, they tend to hold grudges for life!
#3. Assam Macaque
- Macaca assamensis
Also known as the Assamese Macaque.
- Adults are 51-74 cm (20-29 in) long, with 15-30 cm (6-12 in) tails.
- Their faces are pale and hairless.
- Their coats range from light gray to reddish brown. Pale-colored hair covers their chests and bellies.
You can find these monkeys in Cambodia in groups of up to 50 individuals!
Assam Macaques love swinging among the branches, but occasionally, they take a break on the forest floor. They rarely travel, preferring to stay within their territories. Most of their days are spent foraging for food and resting.
These primates are flexible eaters. They love to chow down on fruit when it’s abundant, but otherwise, they turn to young leaves to fill their bellies. Sometimes, these monkeys steal wheat and corn from farms. Though they accept direct handouts from humans, be careful! Interacting with this species can spread disease.
Assam Macaque males leave their troop to find their own group when they reach maturity, like most other primate species. However, unlike other monkeys in Cambodia, males actively help care for the little ones in their troops, even those they don’t share blood with.
#4. Northern Pig-tailed Macaque
- Macaca leonina
- Adults are 40-60 cm (16-24 in), with 14-25 cm (6-10 in) long tails that curl like a pig’s.
- Their puffy facial hair forms a rough heart shape.
- They have olive-gray coats of fur that are paler on the undersides.
The Northern Pig-tailed Macaque is playful and crafty. Regarding food, these monkeys know how to mix things up. They enjoy fruits, shoots, leaves, insects, and bird eggs. Just be warned: these clever creatures might sneak into human settlements searching for bread and biscuits during the colder months. Keep your windows closed!
These monkeys in Cambodia live in tree and bamboo forests.
Northern Pig-tailed Macaques are graceful in the trees and on the forest floor. Females lead social groups of up to 150 members. During feeding time, they split into smaller units. As peaceful creatures, they find it easy to share territories and coexist with neighboring troops.
#5. Bengal Slow Loris
- Nycticebus bengalensis
Also known as the Northern Slow Loris.
- Adults are 26-38 cm (10-15 in) long.
- They have huge eyes, small ears, and protruding snouts.
- Their thick wooly coats are brown-gray, with a dark stripe running across the middle of their backs. Their eyes are outlined with dark fur.
The Bengal Slow Loris loves to hang out in evergreen and deciduous forests. It may be slow, as its name suggests, but this cute primate easily moves through the dense canopy. However, be careful: it’s got sharp teeth and can deliver a painful bite if provoked!
These monkeys in Cambodia are highly adapted to their environment. Thanks to their specialized eyes, they can see at night with ease. Additionally, they have opposable thumbs (like us!) that help them latch onto tree trunks. Most interestingly, female lorises combine secretions from a gland in their elbows with their saliva, creating a toxic substance they rub on their babies. This keeps predators away from their little ones!
The Bengal Slow Loris loves to eat sap and resin. It uses its sharp teeth to gouge the tree bark and its long tongue to scoop out the fluids inside. It also has a taste for nectar and occasionally feeds on swarms of insects.
#6. Stump-tailed Macaque
- Macaca arctoides
Also known as the Bear Macaque.
- Adults are 49-65 cm (19-26 in) long. Their hairless tails are only 3-7 cm (1-3 in) long.
- They have bare pink faces that grow more vibrant as they age.
- Their thick coats range from pale to dark brown. You can identify older individuals by their bald spots.
Evergreen and broadleaf forests are home to Stump-tailed Macaques. Thanks to their thick and cozy fur, these resilient monkeys in Cambodia are not afraid of a little cold weather. Unlike most monkeys, they prefer staying on the ground. Their stocky, muscular bodies are built for walking, not swinging among branches!
When it comes to food, fruits are the Stump-tailed Macaque’s favorite. However, they also love munching on leaves, roots, seeds, insects, frogs, and freshwater crabs. If there’s a farm nearby, they may raid the fields for corn, rice, and potatoes. Cleverly, they use their cheek pouches to store food for later consumption.
Stump-tailed Macaques are a remarkably peaceful species. You won’t see much violence within their ranks. If confrontations happen, they quickly resolve these and restore order. Up to 60 members make up a community, with adult males acting as the protectors.
#7. Indochinese Lutung
- Trachypithecus germaini
Also known as Germain’s Langur.
- Adults are about 55 cm (22 in) long, with tails up to 78 cm (31 in) long.
- They have a thick silver crest on top of their heads. Similar tufts grow out from their cheeks.
- A thin mustache adorns their bare black faces, and their coats are a blend of silver and dark gray.
Residing in lowland, mangrove, and evergreen forests, Indochinese Lutungs are most active when the sun is up. By munching on leaves and branches, these monkeys in Cambodia actually help to prune and keep trees healthy! Unfortunately, despite their helpful efforts, their habitat is threatened by development and logging.
Come mealtime, Indochinese Lutungs love chowing down on lots of leaves, fruits, and flowers. Interestingly, they have a special set of microbes in their multi-chambered stomachs, which helps break down all that fibrous food. After eating, they usually take long naps while waiting for their food to digest.
Indochinese Lutungs hang out in troops with up to 50 members. When babies are born, they cling to their mamas for the first few months. These babies are also vivid orange in color, making it easy for adults to keep an eye on them. So cute!
#8. Lar Gibbon
- Hylobates lar
Also known as the White-handed Gibbon or Malayan Lar Gibbon.
- Adults are 44-59 cm (17-23 in) long. As apes, they lack tails.
- Take note of the ring of white fur framing their black faces.
- White fur also covers their hands and feet.
- Males range from black to shades of brown, while females are cream or light brown.
Meet the eccentric Lar Gibbon, which is technically not a monkey in Cambodia!
These primates are apes, which is a different family than monkeys. They don’t have tails and tend to be larger and have broader chests than monkeys. Additionally, most apes do not have hair on their faces!
If you’re lucky, you might hear these gibbons singing in pairs to claim their territory. With powerful throat sacs, their voices can be heard up to a 1 km (0.6 mi) radius! They live in close-knit families of two to six members, forming lifelong bonds with their mates.
You won’t want to miss this primate’s acrobatic feats! Despite not having a tail, Lar Gibbons can balance on high branches by holding their long arms above their heads. Plus, this species has special wrist joints to swing through the canopy at speeds up to 56 km/h (35 mph)! They can clear a gap of 8 meters (26.2 feet) between trees in a single leap.
Lar Gibbons have a diet of fruits, shoots, leaves, and insects. However, their favorite food is ripe figs. As the day ends, they retire to the tallest trees, where they amusingly sleep upright. But don’t worry, their rumps are covered with leathery skin, so they don’t fall off!
#9. Southern Yellow-cheeked Gibbon
- Nomascus gabriellae
Also known as the Golden-cheeked Gibbon, Red-cheeked Gibbon, and Buff-cheeked Gibbon.
- Adults are 60-80 cm (24-31 in). Like other apes, they have no tails.
- Adult males have black coats with distinctive yellow fur on their cheeks.
- Adult females are blonde. They have a patch of black hair on the top of their heads.
High in the lush treetops of jungles and lowland forests, the elusive Southern Yellow-cheeked Gibbon makes it home. These apes are fruit fanatics but supplement their diet with leaves, insects, and flowers during dry seasons.
The Southern Yellow-cheeked Gibbon is a gravity-defying acrobat with long limbs and a short body. It uses its momentum to swing across trees. At peak velocity, it can clear a whopping 10 meters (32 feet) between branches! And don’t worry about ground predators—this clever primate is way out of their reach.
Boy, do these gibbons know how to make an entrance! As the sun rises, bonded pairs of Southern Yellow-cheeked Gibbons serenade each other with beautiful songs, staking their claim on their territory. Adorably, these devoted duos share the responsibilities of raising their offspring together.
#10. Black-shanked Douc Langur
- Pygathrix nigripes
Also known as the Black-shanked Douc.
- Adults are 55-63 cm (22-25 in) long, with 66-84 cm (26-33 in) tails.
- The bare skin around their eyes is tinted yellow.
- Black hair covers their foreheads and shoulders, and they have gray coats of fur that grow paler towards the undersides.
Black-shanked Douc Langurs are one of the most delightful monkeys in Cambodia.
They are highly social creatures who love to bond with their peers through grooming and play. As a result, some troops include 30 to 50 members, while others settle for a small team of three.
Black-shanked Douc Langurs are masters of the canopy. They can leap from tree to tree with a skilled precision that would make even the most seasoned acrobat jealous. They use their long arms and prehensile tails for balance, careful not to fall from fatal heights.
As for their diet, Black-shanked Douc Langurs have quite the palate. They feed on the young leaves of over 150 trees and plants! Luckily, they have special bacteria in their guts to help break down all that cellulose. During the wet season, they also enjoy consuming lots of fruits, but they’re smart enough to avoid overripe ones that might give them belly aches.
#11. Pileated Gibbon
- Hylobates pileatus
- Adults are 45-64 cm (18-25 in) long.
- Both sexes have thick white fur above their eyes.
- Males have black coats of fur.
- Females have cream or light gray coats, though their chests and bellies are black.
You’ll need luck finding Pileated Gibbons because they’re hidden deep in evergreen and montane forests in Cambodia. When it comes to family, these gibbons stick with their partners and their children for life.
Pileated Gibbons are the ninjas of the primate world! These amazing creatures travel through the treetops at a blinding speed of 56 km/h (35 mph). In a single swing, they can launch themselves over 9 meters (30 feet) as if they’re flying. Plus, their wrists are protected by ball joints which help conserve energy during motion. While walking on land, they raise their arms over their heads for balance.
After a long day of swinging, Pileated Gibbons retire to their favorite sleeping trees. Amusingly, they fall asleep while sitting upright. The next morning, the gibbon family belts out rhythmic calls to start their day. These songs serve as a warning for neighboring troops to stay away.
#12. Pygmy Slow Loris
- Xanthonycticebus pygmaeus
- Adults are 20-23 cm (8-9 in) long with tails that are only 2 cm (1 in) from base to tip.
- They have round ears, huge brown eyes, and short muzzles.
- Dark fur surrounds their eyes; their coats are brown and noticeably paler on the undersides.
These unique primates live in tropical and evergreen forests in Aisa. Pygmy Slow Lorises may be tiny and slow, but don’t be fooled. These fascinating furballs have developed many remarkable traits to survive in their natural habitat. For example, their eyes—glowing like orbs in the dark—allow them to hunt and see through the night.
Moving slowly, Pygmy Slow Lorises are masters at hiding from predators. In fact, they can stay completely still for hours—thanks to a clever system of blood vessels that prevents their limbs from going numb. Plus, their colors blend well against tree bark, making them hard to spot!
These little hunters are always on the lookout for their next meal. Pygmy Slow Lorises munch on insects such as ants and termites, but their favorite food is tree gum or sap. To get to their sticky treats, they bite holes into trees using their sharp teeth. Then, they slurp up the sap with their long tongues.
#13. Red-shanked Douc Langur
- Pygathrix nemaeus
Also known as the Red-shanked Douc.
- Adults are 55-82 cm (22-32 in) long, with 56-74 cm (22-29 in) tails.
- They have black crowns, orange faces, and white beards.
- They boast dark gray coats with white forearms and maroon legs. A red line of fur spans their shoulders and collars.
Hold tight as we swing into the wild, wacky world of Red-shanked Douc Langurs! They love fruits but are not the neatest eaters, so watch out for pits and skins falling on your head! After eating fruit for breakfast, they spend the rest of their day foraging for leaves and buds, which can lead to some funny bouts of gas buildup and burping.
These monkeys in Cambodia inhabit secluded evergreen forests.
Unfortunately, their populations are rapidly declining due to habitat destruction. As of 2020, they face a high risk of extinction.
In a typical group of Red-shanked Douc Langurs, you’ll find around 15 members. As playful creatures, both juveniles and adults love to chase each other around the thick canopy. They’re quite the agile acrobats, so you’ll have to keep your eyes peeled to catch a glimpse of them before they disappear into the greenery.
For more information about animals in Cambodia, check out these guides:
Which of these monkeys in Cambodia is your favorite?
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