Common squirrel monkey is the traditional common name for several small squirrel monkey species native to the tropical areas of South America. The term common squirrel monkey had been used as the common name for Saimiri sciureus before genetic research by Jessica Lynch Alfaro and others indicated S. scuireus covered at least 3 and possibly 4 species: the Guianan squirrel monkey (S. scuireus), Humboldt's squirrel monkey (S. cassiquiarensis) and Collins' squirrel monkey (S. collinsi). The Ecuadorian squirrel monkey (S. cassiquiarensis macrodon), generally regarded as a subspecies of Humboldt's squirrel monkey, had also been sometimes proposed as a separate species that had originally been included within the term "common squirrel monkey.
Common squirrel monkeys are considered both frugivorous and insectivorous, preferring berry-like fruit on branches. When in captivity, squirrel monkeys are fed fruits such as apples, oranges, grapes, and bananas. They also consume a variety of vegetables that include lettuce, celery, and onions. Squirrel monkeys also look for insects and small vertebrates, such as tree frogs. It obtains a majority of its water from the foods eaten, and also obtains water from holes in trees and puddles on the ground. When fruit is scarce, the common squirrel monkey drinks nectar.
The amount of time squirrel monkeys spend foraging depends on the type of food. When bigger fruits and easy access occur, they do not spend much time foraging. Otherwise, they dedicate a considerable amount of time to looking for their foods. Foraging also keeps the monkeys entertained and active. Oftentimes when they are captive, they easily become bored as the food is more easily obtained.
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The Common Squirrel Monkey is native to Brazil, Columbia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Peru, Suriname and Venezuela and is commonly found in tropical rainforests and tropical dry forests.
Common Squirrel Monkeys are frugivores (eat fruit) and insectivores (eat insects).
Up to 25 years.
This arboreal species prefers to live in the lower to middle canopy but will go higher and will come down to ground level. They are very social animals and live in troops of up to 100.