Field of Science

Ateles

Geoffroy's spider monkey Ateles geoffroyi, photographed by Rhett A. Butler.


Belongs within: Platyrrhini.

Ateles, the spider monkeys, is a genus of agile arboreal monkeys found in Central and northern South America. They have particularly long limbs that are used in combination with the prehensile tail to manoeuvre through the trees. Their brachiating abilities are also facilitated by reduction in the thumbs.

Characters (from Nowak 1999): Head and body length 382-635 mm, tail length 508-890 mm. Hair usually coarse, stringy, occasionally soft and fine; underfur lacking; coloration above yellowish grey, darker grey, reddish brown, darker brown or almost black; sides golden yellow to rufous; underparts lighter, usually whitish or yellowish; face usually black with light eye-rings, occasionally flesh-coloured. Clitoris of female greatly enlarged. Tail and legs exceptionally long relative to body length; tail prehensile and extremely flexible. Thumbs poorly developed or absent.

<==Ateles Geoffroy 1806 (see below for synonymy) C57
    |--*A. paniscus (Linnaeus 1758) (see below for synonymy) C57
    |--A. anthropomorphus [=Montaneia anthropomorpha] G91
    |--A. belzebuth Geoffroy 1806 [=Simia belzebuth] C57
    |    |--A. b. belzebuth (see below for synonymy) C57
    |    `--A. b. hybridus Geoffroy 1829 (see below for synonymy) C57
    |--A. chamek (Humboldt 1812) G91, C57 (see below for synonymy) C57
    |--A. fusciceps Gray 1866 [=A. fuscipes (l. c.), Ateleus fusciceps] C57
    |    |--A. f. fusciceps C57
    |    `--A. f. robustus Allen 1914 [incl. A. dariensis Goldman 1915] C57
    |--A. geoffroyi C57
    |    |--A. g. geoffroyi ANG03
    |    |--A. g. frontatus BP87
    |    |--A. g. grisescens Gray 1866 (see below for synonymy) C57
    |    |--A. g. ornatus ANG03
    |    |--A. g. panamensis BP87
    |    `--A. g. vellerosus G69
    `--A. marginatus Geoffroy 1809 G91, C57 (see below for synonymy)

Ateles Geoffroy 1806 [=Ateleus Fischer 1813, Atelius Fischer 1813; incl. Ameranthropoides Montandon 1929, Atelocheirus Geoffroy 1806, Montaneia Ameghino 1911, Sapajus Kerr 1792 (nom. rej.), Sapaja Ritgen 1874, Sapajou Lacépède 1799] C57

Ateles belzebuth belzebuth Geoffroy 1806 [incl. A. bartlettii Gray 1867, A. braccatus Pelzeln 1883 (n. n.), Cebus brissonii Fischer 1829, A. chuva Schlegel 1876, A. fuliginosus Kuhl 1820, A. problema Schlegel in Jentink 1892 (n. n.)] C57

Ateles belzebuth hybridus Geoffroy 1829 [=Ateleus hybridus, Eriodes hybridus; incl. A. belzebuth brunneus Gray 1870, Ameranthropoides loysi Montandon 1929] C57

Ateles chamek (Humboldt 1812) G91, C57 [=Simia chamek C57, A. paniscus chamek C57, Cebus chamek C57; incl. Ateles longimembris Allen 1914 C57, A. ater peruvianus Lönnberg 1940 C57]

Ateles geoffroyi grisescens Gray 1866 [=Ateleus grisescens; incl. Ateles cucullatus Gray 1866, Ateleus cucullatus, Ateles rufiventris Sclater 1872, Ateleus rufiventris] C57

Ateles marginatus Geoffroy 1809 G91, C57 [=Ateleus marginatus C57, Ateles belzebuth marginatus C57, Cebus marginatus C57, Simia marginata C57; incl. Ateles albifrons Schinz 1844 (n. n.) C57, Ateles frontalis Bennett 1831 C57]

*Ateles paniscus (Linnaeus 1758) [=Simia paniscus, Ateleus paniscus, Cebus paniscus, Sapajou paniscus, Simia (Sapajus) paniscus; incl. Ateles ater Cuvier 1823, Ateleus ater, Cebus ater, Sapajou ater, C. paniscus cayennensis Fischer 1829, Ateles pentadactylus Geoffroy 1806, C. pantadactylus, Sapajou pentadactylus, Ateles subpentadactylus Desmarest 1820, Cebus paniscus surinamensis Fischer 1829] C57

*Type species of generic name indicated

REFERENCES

[ANG03] Asher, R. J., M. J. Novacek & J. H. Geisler. 2003. Relationships of endemic African mammals and their fossil relatives based on morphological and molecular evidence. Journal of Mammalian Evolution 10 (1–2): 131–194.

[BP87] Burton, J. A., & B. Pearson. 1987. Collins Guide to the Rare Mammals of the World. Collins: London.

[C57] Cabrera, A. 1957. Catalogo de los mamiferos de America del Sur. I (Metatheria—Unguiculata—Carnivora). Revista del Museo Argentino de Ciencias Naturales “Bernardino Rivadavia” e Instituto Nacional de Investigacion de Las Ciencias Naturales, Ciencias Zoológicas 4 (1): 1–307.

[G69] Goodwin, G. G. 1969. Mammals from the State of Oaxaca, Mexico, in the American Museum of Natural History. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 141 (1): 1–269, 40 pls.

[G91] Groves, C. P. 1991. A Theory of Human and Primate Evolution, revised ed. Clarendon Press: Oxford.

Nowak, R. M. 1999. Walker's Mammals of the World. JHU Press.

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