Albino monkeys are rare among primates. Their rarity makes them a special breed. Albinism is a genetic condition that affects the production of melanin and the pigment, which is responsible for giving colour to the skin, hair and eyes. Albinism occurs due to a mutation of several genes responsible for producing or distributing melanin.
The condition carries a recessive gene, which means that both parents must carry the gene for their offspring to inherit albinism. This explains why albino monkeys are incredibly rare.
This article takes a closer look at these endangered species and specifies where you can find them.
What is albino monkey?
An albino monkey, also known as the white monkey, is a particular specie of primates born without any pigment in its body, skin, eyes and hair. A rare breed, the animal is pale in colour and has red eyes.
Its lack of pigmentation means that the albino monkey is vulnerable to skin diseases due to a lack of protection from the sun. Subsequently, albino monkeys do not freely roam around like other wild animals.
Let us take a closer look at interesting facts about albino monkeys.
An albino monkey typically has red eyes, white hair and white skin, giving it a different appearance than ordinary monkeys. Like regular monkeys, albino monkeys come in various sizes, from the pygmy marmoset. They can be as small as 4.6 inches with a 6.7-inch tail and weigh just over 3.5 ounces, while other species can grow up to 3.5 feet long and 80 pounds in weight.
Albino monkeys can live for around 20-30 years in the wild and up to 35-plus years in captivity. The lifespan of an albino monkey is slightly less than that of a regular monkey. Albino monkeys are vulnerable to several diseases due to a lack of pigmentation. The lack of pigmentation also affects their eyesight, thus they cannot survive like regular monkeys.
Again, they are an endangered specie due to their rarity.
Albino monkeys develop close friendships and savage rivalries like other monkey species. They interact with one another individually in a sophisticated social structure and look out for one another. Like other monkeys, albino monkeys can recall previous interactions and the assistance of a friend when they come into contact. They also experience stress based on societal issues, like humans.
Like other monkeys, albino monkeys’ diet depends on the season. Monkeys generally love bananas. However, when they are in their natural habitats meals such as seeds, nuts, fruits, birds’ eggs and eggs etc.
Survival and reproduction
Normally, it is difficult for monkeys to survive in the wild. But for albino monkeys, it is more difficult. Since they are born without the ability to create colour pigment in their skin, hair, feathers and scales, they are vulnerable to predators like leopards, hyenas, eagles and snakes. Even humans are among the predators that albino monkeys have to avoid.
Also, albino monkeys are more susceptible to sunburn and skin cancer because of their lack of melanin. Melanin protects the skin from the sun and harmful UV rays.
Albino monkeys may also find it difficult to find mates because of their distinctive appearance. This means chances of reproducing their kind are low, which explains their overall low population.
How to find the albino monkey
You can find albino monkeys in the following locations:
- Rainforests: Albino monkeys can be found in tropical rainforests. The dense, lush forests provide plenty of food and shelter for the monkeys.
- Savannas: Albino monkeys can be found in the savanna where scattered trees and large herds of grazing mammals characterise the grasslands.
- Mountain forests: Albino monkeys also live in mountain forests at high elevations, because the habitats are cool and misty with dense vegetation, which makes them home to various animals.
- Urban areas: Provide natural habitat to albinos and other monkey species who have been raised among humans. You can find albino monkeys in zoos or households as domestic pets. The only thing is they have to learn to adapt to the human diet and other resources.
Meanwhile, note that albino monkeys are not completely albino as it depends on their condition. They can experience the condition in specific parts of their bodies such as fur, eyes and skin.
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