Hans Edinger/Associated Press

Males of this species are well known for their brightly colored face, buttocks, and genitals. Females are smaller and less colorful.

They spend most of the day foraging on the ground in open areas, eating fruit, buds, leaves, insects, and fungi.


At night or when threatened, they retreat to the forest canopy.

Social primates, mandrills are typically found in groups of twenty to forty, usually led by an older male.

The young are often seen riding on the mother's back or clinging to the fur on her belly.

Changes in land use and hunting threaten the species.

Animal Facts

Name: Mandrill (Mandrillus sphinx)

Family: Cercopithecidae (Old World Monkeys)

Range: Western central Africa

Habitat: Tropical forest

Diet: Fruits, seeds, fungi, roots, eggs, insects, and small animals

Head and Body Length: 22 to 37 inches (55 to 95 cm)

Tail Length: 3 to 4 inches (7 to 10 cm)

Weight: about 99 pounds (45 kg)

Life Cycle: Mating June to August; gestation about 170 days, usually one young born

Description: Speckled, olive-gray fur; pale underneath; stumpy tail; males have a scarlet nose, prominent, bony blue flanges, a yellow beard, and a mauve-blue rump

Conservation Status: Vulnerable

Major Threat(s): Habitat loss and degradation; hunting

What Can I Do?: Visit the Wildlife Conservation Society and the International Primate Protection League for information on how you can help.