Monkeys are intelligent mammals in the Primates order that are classified in the same suborder and order as humans. They have specialized hands for climbing, and extremely developed minds capable of highly specialized, and advanced tasks. While monkeys are located all over the world, the two major types are typically found in the forests and mountains of South America and Africa. These two types of monkeys, the old world monkey (cercopithecoid), and new world monkey (platyrrhine) both have very different characteristics, physically and mentally. However, both groups are classified as some of the most intellectual types of mammals, which allows for them to survive in a wide spectrum of environments.
Because of their physical composition and their physiological similarities with humans, monkeys are often used in research, and vaccine development. Their genetic resemblance with humans—a 93% DNA match, make them frequent targets for researching harmful diseases. In fact, multiple medical breakthroughs were aided by experimentation upon monkeys. For example, the success of the rabies vaccine, involved using several monkeys as test subjects. In addition to medical breakthroughs produced with the aid of monkeys, several scientific and technological experiments also relied on the usage and cooperation of monkey. The most widely acclaimed ones, are space travel, disabled humans guidance, and an experiment involving monkeys using sign language.
A monkey can vary in size from about 5 inches long weighing 5 oz (Pygmy marmosets) to 37 inches long weighing 77 pounds (Mandrill). Most monkeys are pelage (fur-coated) and have some form of a tail. They have two similarly proportioned hairless hands as humans do, as well as the same basic skull shape as humans. Additionally, almost every monkey has a pair of highly flexible hands which are specialized for climbing. On a similar accord, monkeys have very intelligent minds, and are capable of highly specialized mental capabilities. This allows them to accomplish a wide variety of useful functions such as memorization, shape recognization, and communication.
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