Primates

Primates

The primates are an order of mammals which is made up of apes, monkeys, humans, lemurs, lorises and tarsiers. We humans share a mutual evolutional ancestry with all primates, so based on this motion, primates have mesmerized scientist with their behavioral traits, bodily features and societal arrangements. There are more than 300 various species of primates in the world.

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Photo by Schristia

The largest of the primates is the gorilla and can weigh around 300 to 400 pounds, while the smallest of the primate is the tiny mouse lemur that is only about 6 cm long. Almost every primate species is threatened and endangered. Human activities vis-à-vis hunting and forest devastation has brought some species to the brink of extinction.

Primates as Pets

From chimpanzees to capuchins to lemurs to marmosets, primates of all sizes are kept as pets all over the world, even though they are tiny and cute as babies they still grow up, and some are more powerful than man!  But the question remains; do they make good pets?

They can contact diseases from humans and transmit them to humans, so before making a speedy decision on keeping a primate you should seek professional advice. It should also be noted that as primates mature, so do their motivations and needs. Similar to people, they have been known to suffer intense psychological states. 

If you subject your primate to a dark or sun-deprived quarters with minimal human interaction they can become very depressed and even fall sick; being species that are very social, they need to live within very specific and developed family structures. They also require a support of their group. Primates often do so easily get acquainted with new faces like cats and dogs do. A primate with the best of care can live up to 20 and 40 years.

Pet monkeys are known to bite it they want to and like people they all have different characters and each is unique in its own trait; some will be quite and gentle, while some can be very aggressive. Primates are not predictable and can show aggression to almost anyone.

Some species need diets that can be difficult to prepare and their enclosures are also very expensive. They should spend time outdoors too if possible and when enclosed should be in a rather large enclosure. They need to have different toys and exercise equipment to keep them stimulated.

Primate species commonly kept as pets are:

Capuchin – They are very smart, territorial, and have a lifespan of about 40 years. They won’t learn how to use a toilet so the owner must get used to changing its diapers.

Chimpanzees – They are strong and large animals with a lifespan of about 60 years in captivity. These are not household pets and males particularly will be very aggressive when they grow up. They are the largest kind of primate typically found as pets.

Paradise Park 19Photo by charlieishere@btinternet.com

Marmosets – These are tiny primates with a decently powerful bite, despite their tiny mouths. They need very secure cages with tiny bar spacing so they wouldn’t escape.