Lion-tailed macaques are unique to India. Due to the growing agricultural industry, resulting in habitat destruction, they are endangered and number only about 2,500. As few at 600 live in zoos around the world.
Lion-tailed macaques are arboreal, meaning they live in trees. Like other "old world" primates, they have food pouches where they can safely store food.
In the early 1970s, lion-tailed macaques were still living throughout the southern third of India. Today, they only live in mountain forests scattered across three Indian states: Karnataka, Kerala, and Tamil Nadu.
In addition to deforestation, lion-tailed macaques suffer from being captured for the pet trade, zoos, research, and use in traditional Chinese medicine.
"Mona Lisa", more often called by the name "Lisa", was a pet before finding permanent refuge at Black Pine. She really enjoys her time outdoors and is sometimes seen carrying her 'baby' - a stuffed animal - like she would real live offspring.
One of her previous owners was unable to provide the medical care she needed and Lisa became very ill. A good Samaritan came to her aid and provided her foster care until she recovered. Then Lisa was adopted permanently by Black Pine.
Photos courtesy of Clay Myers.
InfoBox - Lion Tailed Macaque
Diet in wild: Fruits, leaves, small vertebrates and invertrebates.
Life span in wild: Varies, can live up to 30 years in captivity.
Weight: 15 to 33 pounds, males are slightly larger than females.
Native habitat: Western Ghats mountains in India.