Saturday, December 08, 2012

In search of the rare, the elusive . . . Red Colobus Monkey

Before joining up with our safari, we stopped in old Stone Town for four days, got to sleep under mosquito netting, and saw the Red Colobus Monkey. 

Pretty cute, huh? This little red monkey is an endangered species found only in Zanzibar, in the Jozoni Forest, about a half hour's ride down from Stone Town. 

There, we saw families of these monkeys just ambling from tree to tree as we walked below them along the ground. The monkeys stopped to check us out, pausing long enough for heartfelt glances. Then they scampered down on the forest floor, across a field, and up palm trees. Typically these little monkeys live to about age 20 and in social groups of about 30. The group we saw had about 8 monkeys, including babies.

Apparently the Swahili name for the Red Colobus is "poison monkey." Partly because of their 'bad smell,' people believe the monkeys kill the trees they eat, and they're never kept as pets.

Don't you wonder what they're thinking?

If you'd like to jump over to my writing blog, there's an African poem there . . .

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