Monkeys and Primates: Our Captivating Cousins

Playlist by Tom Pritchard — 9 Videos

Ring Tailed Lemurs - 5 Unusual Facts

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Monkeys and Primates: Our Captivating Cousins

Why are people so fascinated by monkeys and other primates? Perhaps because the study of the primate order—our closest biological relatives—is the study of ourselves, and our evolution. However, as well as providing important information about our behavioral and physiological development, primates undoubtedly hold a fascination for humans beyond simple academic explanation.

Monkeys and other primates have a number of common features. Most are tree-dwellers, and well adapted to climbing. Most have opposable thumbs, an evolutionary milestone that enables both the manipulation of objects and life in the trees. They have forward-facing eyes, flat finger and toe nails rather than claws, and fingerprints. They are intelligent mammals, capable of tool use, complex social interaction, and a number of other traits that we typically consider to be human. Here is an introduction to some of the most interesting animals and behaviors that the primate order has to offer.

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from geobeats

Ring Tailed Lemurs - 5 Unusual Facts - part of the World's Greatest Attractions travel video series by GeoBeats. Ring-Tailed Lemurs, named after their most distinctive feature, are the most widely-known of the species and are critically endangered residents of Madagascar. Besides climbing, male lemurs use their tails to send stinky musk scent from their glands at mating-competitors. Lemurs' food of preference is fruit, but they will eat other forms of vegetation including leaves, bark, and flowers. The gestation time of the Ring-Tails is about half that of humans', but like us, they give birth to one young at a time. Like many primates, Ring-Tailed Lemurs are social animals, living in groups which range in size from less than ten to close to thirty.

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