The black-handed spider monkey has a prehensile tail which it uses for grasping when feeding and when moving through the forest. Male black-handed spider monkeys lack a baculum, which is unusual for most primates (Dixson, 1987). This is a sexually monomorphic species. The black-handed spider monkey has long and slender limbs especially the forelimbs which are used in suspensory locomotion (Fleagle, 1988). This species lacks a pollex.
This species is found in more wet than dry forests and is also found in evergreen tropical rainforests (Hershkovitz, 1977). This species prefers to live in the upper levels of the canopy (Fleagle, 1988). The black-handed spider monkey is found in the countries of Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama.
The black-handed spider monkey is a frugivorous species, which tends to favor ripe fruits. This species does also eat leaves. The black-handed spider monkey eats leaves in the late morning and late in the day before it would rest (Chapman and Chapman, 1991). This species forages in subgroups of 1-6 individuals, and these groups are of the following types: solitary, all male, all female (with or without infants), and mixed-sex (Kinzey, 1997). Chapman (1990) found that foraging subgroup size correlates positively with resource patch size. The mean group size for this species is about 15 individuals. This species sleeps in a central place in their range, and uses the same sleeping area repeatedly most often (Chapman, 1989).
staring open-mouth face: This is where the eyes are opened wide, the mouth is open with the teeth covered by the lips (Jolly, 1972). This occurs when mobbing a predator or serves to communicate an inhibited threat (Jolly, 1972).
staring bared-teeth scream face: This is where the eye are opened wide, the mouth is open with the corners drawn back so that the teeth and gums are revealed (Jolly, 1972). This display occurs with terror flight (Jolly, 1972).
silent bared-teeth face: This is where the eyes are staring at the stimulus, the eye brows are either relaxed or up, and the corners of the mouth are drawn back allowing the teeth to show (Jolly, 1972). This is used to communicate submission or a friendly approach (Jolly, 1972). This display is also seen during attacking (Jolly, 1972).
pout face: This is where the eyes are opened wide and the lips are pushed forward such that the mouth resembles an "O" shape (Jolly, 1972). This occurs with contact calls and also occurs with begging (Jolly, 1972).
relaxed open mouth face: This is where the eyes are normal or narrow and the mouth is open wide with the corners being up (Jolly, 1972). This behavior is seen during play (Jolly, 1972).
|Last Updated: October 4, 2003.