Significance to humans

Atelidae are represented in the art and legends of the people they live nearby. Their large body size and social habits have probably always made them a source of prized meat. The large testes of Brachyteles were associated with sexual potency, and made into purses by hunters.

None of the Atelidae are considered to be agricultural pests or dangerous to humans. The docile behavior of Ateles and Brachyteles also contribute to their desirability as pets.

A Geoffrey's spider monkey (Ateles geoffroyi) in the trees of Costa Rica. (Photo by Animals Animals ©John Pontier. Reproduced by permission.)

The female black howler monkey (Alouatta pigra), despite what the name implies, is actually tan in color. (Illustration by Jarrod Erdody)

Northern Muriqui

1. Venezuelan red howler monkey (Alouatta seniculus); 2. Mantled howler monkey (Alouatta palliata); 3. Northern muriqui (Brachyteles hypoxan-thus); 4. Southern muriqui (Brachyteles arachnoides); 5. Geoffroy's spider monkey (Ateles geoffroyi); 6. Peruvian spider monkey (Ateles chamek); 7. Gray woolly monkey (Lagothrix cana); 8. Colombian woolly monkey (Lagothrix lugens). (Illustration by Bruce Worden)

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