Mammal

Francois' langur

Area: 
China, northern Vietnam, and west-central Laos
Habitat: 
Forests
Food: 
Leaves, fruit, flowers, and insects
Size: 
18 1/2 to 25 inches long; 12 ½ to 20 pounds
Babies: 
Born with bright orange fur, a baby’s hair color fades and turns dark at about 3 to 6 months of age.
These monkeys feed in trees but sleep in caves and crevices.
Long-limbed Leaf Eaters

 

 

Have you ever heard the saying “you are what you eat”? Well, these primatesMembers of the most highly developed order of animals, including humans, monkeys, and apes. belong to a group called leaf monkeys because, well, they eat leaves!

 

The lettuce leaves humans eat are soft, but the tree leaves these monkeys eat are tough. Luckily, these monkeys have a special stomach to help digest them—it has two parts. First the leaves go into the first chamber where a special kind of bacteriaVery tiny plants. Bacteria are so small that they can only be seen through a microscope. Some kinds of bacteria cause disease. Others do useful things, like making soil richer. breaks down the fiberous food. The second stomach finishes the job.

 

Some people call these monkeys Francois' langur. But no matter what you call them, they are very social. They live in groups of up to 12 monkeys, and watch out for each other—especially the babies. Female Francois' monkeys take turns caring for little ones in the troop, even if they have never had a baby of their own. Some scientists think the baby monkey’s bright orange fur helps get and keep other monkey’s attention.