Black Spider Monkey

Kingdom Order Family Genus Species
Animalia Primates Atelidae Ateles Ateles paniscus
black spider monkey
IUCN Status: Vulnerable
  • Common Name: black spider monkey
  • Taxonomy Classification Year: 1758
  • Monkey Size: 40 to 60 cm (15.75 to 23.62 in)
  • Skin Color(s): Jet-black
  • Habitat: Forest, rainforest
  • Diet: Herbivorous
  • Native Countries: Brazil, French Guiana, Guyana, Peru, Bolivia

black spider monkey Distribution

Black spider monkey Characteristics

Black Spider Monkey

Ateles paniscus, the black spider monkey[1], is one of three sub-species of spider monkeys.

  • They are found in healthy tropical forests in South and Central America.
  • Black spider monkeys show slight variation in appearance, but males are larger than females.
  • Both females and males have an average weight of 9.11 kg and 8.44 kg, respectively. They have small heads in relation to their bodies.
  • Also, they have long legs and arms and a tail that helps them balance when moving through the treetops.
  • Aside from the face, feet, and hands, they are covered in jet-black hair longer than a typical primate.

What Do Black Spider Monkeys Eat?

Ateles Paniscus

The black spider monkey preys on[¶]:

  • Laurel Espada (Ocotea floribunda).
  • Conejo (Protium tenuifolium)
  • Hogplum (Spondias mombin)
  • Palo De Gallina (Alchorneopsis floribunda).
  • Black Manwood (Minquartia guianensis).
  • Cuero De Rana (Laetia procera).
  • Mata Palos (Ficus amazonica).
  • Icecreambean (Inga edulis)
  • Trichilia (Trichilia)
  • Guiana Brosimum (Brosimum guianense).
  • Fourleaf Buchenavia (Buchenavia tetraphylla).
  • Maripa Palm (Attalea maripa).
  • Jamaican Cherry Fig (Ficus americana).
  • Pacae Colorado (Inga alba)
  • Wild Balata (Micropholis guyanensis)
  • Bulletwood (Manilkara bidentata)
  • Inga Grande (Inga alata)
  • Urucuri Palm (Attalea phalerata)

Black spider monkey Facts

  • Of all the Ateles species, Ateles paniscus is the largest.
  • They prefer pristine (mature) rainforests and rarely venture into disturbed habitats, making them particularly vulnerable to forest fragmentation.
  • Their prehensile tail allows these primates to find stability when perched on branches, reach out for food at the end of brittle branches when suspended, and as a fifth limb to move around dangerous spots.
  • These South-American monkeys spend most of their time in the middle and upper regions of the tree canopy. At night they sleep in groups in the trees for protection.
  • Ateles paniscus initiate courtship by playing and wrestling with members of the opposite sex.

Cite This Page

APA7MLA8Chicago (2024, April 13). Black Spider Monkey. Bio Explorer. "Black Spider Monkey" Bio Explorer, 13 April 2024, "Black Spider Monkey" Bio Explorer, April 13 2024.
Key References
  • [1]“Black spider monkey – Wisconsin National Primate Research Center – UW-Madison”. Accessed August 09, 2022. Link.
  • [¶]– Fricke, E.C., Svenning, J. Accelerating homogenization of the global plant-frugivore meta-network. Nature 585, 74-78 (2020).
  • [¶]– fgabriel1891/Palm-Frugivore_Interactions_Neo-AfrotropicsQuiroga-Castro, V. D.; Roldan, A. I.. 2001. The fate of Attalea phalerata (Palmae) seeds dispersed to a tapir latrine. Biotropica. 472-477
  • [¶]– fgabriel1891/Palm-Frugivore_Interactions_Neo-AfrotropicsKahnF. & de GranvilleJ. 1992. Palms in forest ecosystems of Amazonia. Springer-Verlag, Heidelberg.


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