Stump-tailed macaque

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Stump-tailed macaque
Stump tailed Macaque P1130751 24.jpg
Scientific classification Red Pencil Icon.png
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Primates
Suborder: Haplorhini
Infraorder: Simiiformes
Family: Cercopithecidae
Genus: Macaca
M. arctoides [2]
Binomial name
Macaca arctoides [2]
(I. Geoffroy, 1831)
Stump-tailed Macaque area.png
Stump-tailed macaque range
(blue – native, red – introduced, orange – possibly extinct)
Synonyms [1]
  • Macaca brunneus(Anderson, 1871)
  • Macaca harmandi(Trouessart, 1897)
  • Macaca melanotus(Ogilby, 1839)
  • Macaca melli(Matschie, 1912)
  • Macaca rufescens(Anderson, 1872)
  • Macaca speciosus(Murie, 1875)
  • Macaca ursinus(Gervais, 1854)

The stump-tailed macaque (Macaca arctoides), also called the bear macaque, is a species of macaque found in South Asia. In India, it is found in south of the Brahmaputra River, in the northeastern part of the country. [3] Its range in India extends from Assam and Meghalaya to eastern Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram and Tripura. [4]


It is primarily frugivorous, but eats many types of vegetation, such as seeds, leaves and roots, but also hunts freshwater crabs, frogs, bird eggs and insects. [5]

Physical characteristics and behavioural characteristics

The stump-tailed macaque has long, thick, dark brown fur covering its body, but its face and its short tail, which measures between 32 and 69 mm (1.3–2.7 in), are hairless. [5] Infants are born white and darken as they mature. [5] As they age, their bright pink or red faces darken to brown or nearly black and lose most of their hair. [5] Males are larger than females, measuring 51.7–65 cm long and weighing 9.7–10.2 kg, while females measure 48.5–58.5 cm and weigh 7.5–9.1 kg. [5] Males' canine teeth, which are important for establishing dominance within social groups, are more elongated than those of the females. [5] Like all macaques, this species has cheek pouches to store food for short periods of time. [5]

Sound of Stump-tailed macaque (Macaca arctoides) – Kaeng Krachan National Park

Stump-tailed macaque generally share the same social structure of any macaque species with a linear dominance hierarchy that is rigid and hereditary in females yet fluctuates among males based on their fighting ability and social manoeuvring, but what makes stump-tail macaques truly unique is their ability to defuse intense confrontations and maintain a high degree of pacifism and harmony in their troop, thanks to their surprisingly rich repertoire of reconciliation tactics. [6] This species has no lasting pair bonds and is truly promiscuous, a staple for macaques. Physical violence very rarely occurs, and although minor scraps often flair up and physical intimidation displays occur, they tend to quickly be resolved, resulting in this species being labelled as peaceful. [7] Stump-tailed macaques are remarkably unfussy in their eating habits though fruit generally is a staple part of their diet. Stump-tail macaques have a large, bulky, muscular build with thick, solid limbs, making them very mobile on land yet quite ungainly in trees, and this unusual physique for a macaque may be responsible for this species unique tendency to consume larger quantities of meat than other macaque species. Stump-tail macaques feed on very large quantities of insects, small animals and eggs. [7]


This Old World monkey travels quadrupedally, usually on the ground, as it is not very agile in trees. [5] It is generally found in evergreen tropical and subtropical moist broadleaf forests, at different elevations depending on the amount of rainfall in the area. [5] It depends on rainforests for food and shelter, and is not found in dry forests except where it ranges in the Himalayan region of India, only spending time in secondary forests if it is bordering primary tropical forests. [5] With its thick fur, the stump-tailed macaque can live in cold climates, at elevations up to 4 km (2.5 mi; 13,000 ft) above sea level. [8] It is distributed from northeastern India and southern China into the northwest tip of West Malaysia on the Malay Peninsula. [2] [5] It is also found in Burma, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. [1] [5] It is possibly extinct from Bangladesh. [9]

A study population was introduced to Tanaxpillo, an uninhabited island in Lake Catemaco, Veracruz, Mexico in 1974, where it ranges in seminatural conditions. [5] Most information on the species comes from the introduced population on Tanaxpillo and other captive settings, as few long-term studies have been conducted on the stump-tailed macaque in the wild. [5]


A study population of female stump-tailed macaques was found to have increased levels of steroid sex hormones, specifically 17β-estradiol and progesterone levels. 17β-estradiol levels were significantly greater during summer and fall and progesterone levels were significantly greater during summer, fall and winter. This explains that stump-tailed macaques have two mating seasons per year: one in summer (July–August) and one in fall (November). This is supported by the distribution of birth frequency in stump-tailed macaques. [10]

See also

Related Research Articles

Macaque Genus of Old World monkeys

The macaques constitute a genus (Macaca) of gregarious Old World monkeys of the subfamily Cercopithecinae. The 23 species of macaques inhabit ranges throughout Asia, North Africa, and Gibraltar. Macaques are principally frugivorous, although their diet also includes seeds, leaves, flowers, and tree bark. Some species, such as the crab-eating macaque, subsist on a diet of invertebrates and occasionally small vertebrates. On average, southern pig-tailed macaques in Malaysia eat about 70 large rats each per year. All macaque social groups are matriarchal, arranged around dominant females.

Crab-eating macaque Species of mammal

The crab-eating macaque, also known as the long-tailed macaque and referred to as the cynomolgus monkey in laboratories, is a cercopithecine primate native to Southeast Asia. A species of macaque, the crab-eating macaque has a long history alongside humans; it has been alternately seen as an agricultural pest, sacred animal in some temples, and more recently, the subject of medical experiments.

Old World monkey Family of mammals

Old World monkey is the common English name for a family of primates known taxonomically as the Cercopithecidae. Twenty-four genera and 138 species are recognized, making it the largest primate family. Old World monkey genera include baboons, macaques, and mabahlls. Common names for other Old World monkeys include the talapoin, guenon, colobus, douc, vervet, gelada, mangabey, langur, mandrill, surili (Presbytis), patas, and proboscis monkey. Phylogenetically, they are more closely related to apes than to New World monkeys. They diverged from a common ancestor of New World monkeys around 55 million years ago.

Rhesus macaque Species of Old World monkey

The rhesus macaque, colloquially rhesus monkey, is a species of Old World monkey. It is listed as least concern in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species in view of its wide distribution, presumed large population, and its tolerance of a broad range of habitats. It is native to South, Central, and Southeast Asia and has the widest geographic range of all non-human primates, occupying a great diversity of altitudes and a great variety of habitats, from grasslands to arid and forested areas, but also close to human settlements.

Lion-tailed macaque Species of Old World monkey

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Celebes crested macaque Species of Old World monkey

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Arunachal macaque Species of Old World monkey

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Toque macaque Species of Old World monkey

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Assam macaque Species of Old World monkey

The Assam macaque or Assamese macaque is a macaque of the Old World monkey family native to South and Southeast Asia. Since 2008, the species has been listed as "near threatened" by the IUCN, as it is experiencing significant declines due to hunting, habitat degradation, and fragmentation.

Formosan rock macaque Species of Old World monkey

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Nokrek National Park

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Endangered mammals of India are the mammal species in India that are listed as threatened in the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Animals

Southern pig-tailed macaque Species of mammal

The southern pig-tailed macaque, also known as the Sundaland pig-tailed macaque and Sunda pig-tailed macaque, is a medium-sized macaque that lives in southern Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia. It is known locally as the beruk.

Northern pig-tailed macaque Species of Old World monkey

The northern pig-tailed macaque is a species of macaque in the family Cercopithecidae. It is found in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, India, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam. Traditionally, M. leonina was considered a subspecies of the southern pig-tailed macaque, but is now classified as individual species.

Hoollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary Protected area of evergreen forest in Assam, India

The Hoollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary, formerly known as the Gibbon Wildlife Sanctuary or Hollongapar Reserve Forest, is an isolated protected area of evergreen forest located in Assam, India. The sanctuary was officially constituted and renamed in 1997. Set aside initially in 1881, its forests used to extend to the foothills of the Patkai mountain range.

Balpakram is located in South Garo Hills district in Meghalaya, India.

Tibetan macaque Species of Old World monkey

The Tibetan macaque, also known as the Chinese stump-tailed macaque or Milne-Edwards' macaque, is a macaque species found from eastern Tibet east to Guangdong and north to Shaanxi in China. It has also been reported from northeastern India. This species lives in subtropical forests at elevations from 800 to 2,500 m above sea level.

White-cheeked macaque Species of Old World monkey

The white-cheeked macaque is a species of macaque found only in Mêdog County in southeastern Tibet and Arunachal Pradesh in northeastern India. The white-cheeked macaque lives in forest habitats, from tropical forests to primary and secondary evergreen broad-leaved forests and mixed broadleaf-conifer forests. The species was first described by its discoverers, Chinese primatologists Cheng Li, Chao Zhao, and Peng-Fei Fan, in the American Journal of Primatology in 2015. It is one of twenty-three extant species in the genus Macaca, and the most recent to be formally described to science. While the species' exact conservation status has not yet been determined, it is likely threatened by poaching, deforestation, and increased human development of its habitat, much like the other primates which inhabit the area.

Kamlang Wildlife Sanctuary

The Kamlang Wildlife Sanctuary, established in 1989, is rich in flora and fauna. It is situated in the Lohit District of the northeastern Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh. The park is named after the Kamlang River which flows through it. The Mishmi, Digaru Mishmi, and Miju Mishmi people tribal people who reside around the periphery of the sanctuary claim their descent from the King Rukmo of the epic Mahabharata. They believe in a myth of an invisible god known as Suto Phenkhenynon jamalu. An important body of water in the sanctuary is the Glow Lake. Located in tropical and sub-tropical climatic zones, the sanctuary is the habitat of the four big cat species of India: tiger, leopard, clouded leopard and snow leopard.


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