Howler Monkey in Nicaragua

Animals of Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve

Estación Biológica Laguna de Apoyo

Order Primates

Golden-Mantled Howler Monkey Alouatta palliata

As recently as 1996, howler monkeys were only locally distributed in the forests of Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve. The crater interior along the entire northern shore of Lake Apoyo did not sustain a permanent population, excepting a small troop which remained along the entrance road about one kilometer after entering the crater. Today, however, is much different. Howlers can be found all through the northern sector of the crater interior today, excepting in the yards of some of the houses along the shore.

howler monkey

Mom and baby howler Alouatta palliata on the move in a Cecropia peltata tree in the garden of Estación Biológica Laguna de Apoyo. Photo by Mark de Graaf.

Howler monkeys eat leaves and fruit. They leave the trees and set foot on ground only under duress. These animals live in trees without ever touching the ground during their entire life, making their population entirely dependent on a continuous tree canopy. The marked seasonality of tropical dry forest, the ecosystem of the forests of Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve, also places an important bottleneck in howler monkey populations. How these monkeys find appropriate food year-round is not well-understood, which is likely the reason for declines or disappearances of howler monkeys in many areas near people throughout the region. The species found here, Alouatta palliata is now abundant in much of the forest of Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve, although its population in other peri-urban areas in Nicaragua is severely fragmented.

Alouatta palliata

Laguna de Apoyo has a large and growing howler monkey population. Photo by Don Mackler.

golden-mantled howler monkey

This howler monkey can hang by the tail easily because of a pad of hairless skin on the underside of the tail near the tip. Photo by Jeffrey McCrary.

nature photography Nicaragua

Howler monkeys become shy when they notice they are being observed. Photo by Tessa Janga.

Alouatta palliata

A patch of long, golden hair on the flanks gives this species its name. Photo by Tessa Janga.

golden-mantled howler monkey

Animals of Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve

Our blog entry 1 on variegated squirrels in Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve

Our blog entry 2 on variegated squirrels in Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve

Our blog entry 1 on golden-mantled howler monkeys in Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve

Our blog entry 2 on golden-mantled howler monkeys in Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve

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wildlife Nicaragua

The environment of Laguna de Apoyo is natural and nearly unspoiled.

 

Howler monkey

Seed collection is performed locally to promote the conservation of local genetic varieties of plants in natural forest restoration. Photo by Jeffrey McCrary.

 

Golden-mantled Howler Monkey Nicaragua

The forest inside the crater in Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve contains dozens of reptile species.

 

howler monkey

Thanks to the efforts of FUNDECI/GAIA and the contributions of visitors to Estación Biológica, these children can attend the new, beautiful "Héroes y Mártires de Xiloá" rural school near the shore of Laguna de Xiloá in Chiltepe Peninsula Nature Reserve. Photo by Belén Camino.

 

monkeys in Nicaragua

Field identification of the reptiles of Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve. Photo by Kolby Kirk.

 

wildlife Nicaragua

Many wildlife species are common in Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve. Photo by Lewis Honour.

 

howler monkey Nicaragua

This tiny snake, Tantilla armillata, was the first of its speces to be found in Laguna de Apoyo Nature Reserve. Photo by Lewis Honour.