Burnished Saki

Kingdom Order Family Genus Species
Animalia Primates Pitheciidae Pithecia Pithecia inusta
IUCN Status: Least-Concern
  • Common Name: Burnished Saki
  • Taxonomy Classification Year: 1823
  • Monkey Size: 30 to 50 cm (12 to 20 in)
  • Skin Color(s): Burnt tan
  • Habitat: Rainforest
  • Diet: Omnivorous
  • Native Countries: Peru, Brazil

Burnished Saki Distribution

Burnished Saki Characteristics

The Burnished saki[1] is a species of saki monkey, a species of New World Monkey. It is located in central Peru and a small part of adjacent Brazil.

  • Always needing a haircut, the Burnished saki is a small primate with a dark, woolly coat.
  • Their partially bald face is surrounded by a thick fringed hairstyle reminiscent of their moniker, a monk.
  • Adult individuals have their faces covered with burnt light brown fur.
  • It is distinguished from Pythecia monachus by the facial coloration of the juveniles; juvenile males have densely flattened white hairs, and females have gray-black or tan rosts that fade to white, as opposed to the bicolored brown-white rosts of Pythecia monachus.
  • Their short hind limbs are designed for fast long-distance jumps, perfect for life in trees. The tail of a Burnished saki is as thick and hairy as the rest of the body.
  • These South American primates’ tails are not prehensile and often sink into the edges of branches like a particularly dirty feather duster.

Burnished Saki Facts

  • The species was described by Johann Baptist von Spix in 1823 but was later merged with the monk saki (Pythecia monachus). However, a 2014 study revived it as a separate species based on differences in the fur coloration of juvenile individuals.
  • These Peruvian monkeys are shy and cautious animals entirely arboreal, high up in trees and often descending to lower levels but not to the ground.
  • Usually moves on all fours but can often walk upright on a large branch and jump over gaps.
  • The female gives birth to one young per breeding season, with an average family size of 4.5.
  • This species is believed to be threatened by deforestation and poaching; therefore, its population is in decline.

Suggested Reading: Monkey Species

Cite This Page

BioExplorer.net. (2024, April 12). Burnished Saki. Bio Explorer. https://www.bioexplorer.net/animals/mammals/monkeys/burnished-saki/.
BioExplorer.net. "Burnished Saki" Bio Explorer, 12 April 2024, https://www.bioexplorer.net/animals/mammals/monkeys/burnished-saki/.
BioExplorer.net. "Burnished Saki" Bio Explorer, April 12 2024. https://www.bioexplorer.net/animals/mammals/monkeys/burnished-saki/.
Key References
  • [1]“The Behavioural Ecology of a Potentially Undescribed Morph of Saki Monkey (genus Pithecia) in a Highly Diverse Primate Community” – Uppsala Universitet. Accessed December 12, 2022. Link.


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