Southern pig-tailed macaque
The southern pig-tailed macaque (Macaca nemestrina), also known as the Sundaland pig-tailed macaque and Sunda pig-tailed macaque, is a medium-sized macaque that lives in southern Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia. It is known locally as the berok.
|Southern pig-tailed macaque|
|At the Prague Zoo, Czech Republic|
|Southern pig-tailed macaque range|
Etymology and taxonomyEdit
The species epithet, nemestrina, is an adjective (derived from Latin Nemestrinus, meaning "the god of groves") modified to agree in gender with the feminine generic name. M. nemestrina formerly included the northern pig-tailed, Pagai Island, and Siberut macaques as subspecies. All four are now considered separate species.
As with other Macaca species, male is larger than female; while male is measured as 50–58 cm (20–23 in) in length and 5–12 kg (11–26 lb) in weight, female is measured as 38–48 cm (15–19 in) in length and 4.5–6 kg (9.9–13.2 lb) in weight. This macaque has buff-brown fur, with a darker dorsal area and lighter ventral area. Its common name refers to the short tail held semi-erect, resembling the tail of a pig.
Behaviour and ecologyEdit
M. nemestrina is mainly terrestrial, but also a skilled climber. Unlike almost all primates, these macaques love water. They live in large groups that split into smaller groups during daytime when they are foraging. They are omnivorous, feeding mainly on fruits, seeds, berries, cereals, fungi, and invertebrates. A study in peninsular Malaysia found them to be the primary, and perhaps the only, seed dispersers of the rattan species Daemonorops calicarpa and Calamus castaneus.
There is a hierarchy among males, based on strength, and among females, based on heredity. Thus, the daughter of the alpha female will immediately be placed above all other females in the group. The alpha female leads the group, while the male role is more to manage conflict within the group and to defend it.
Habitat and distributionEdit
It is found in the southern half of the Malay Peninsula (only just extending into southernmost Thailand), Borneo, Sumatra and Bangka Island. There are reports of the species having been present in Singapore before 1950, but these were likely escaped pets. The only pig-tailed macaques in Singapore today are introduced monkeys.
|Wikispecies has information related to Macaca nemestrina.|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Macaca nemestrina.|
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- "What's Funny About the Business of Monkeys Picking Coconuts?". NPR. October 19, 2015.
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