Do Baboons Eat Meat? (Or Other Monkeys??)

Did you know that baboons are the largest monkeys in the world and that young baboons will play games like wrestling, swinging, and chasing with one another? Baboons also have at least ten different, unique vocalizations that they use to communicate with other baboons.

Humans and baboons have a genetic similarity of about 94%! If you liked those fun baboon facts, keep reading for some more! 

Table of Contents

Do baboons eat meat? 

Baboons eat both plants and meat. They will eat plant matter such as grasses, fruits, seeds, roots, and bark, but they will also eat other animals. Some of the animals that baboons will eat include rodents, birds, and young animals such as antelope and sheep. Baboons may also sometimes eat other monkeys! 

READ ALSO: Do Baboons Have Tails?

Do all primates eat meat? 

Baboons are part of the primate family. Primates are a group of mammals that have large brains and flexible hands. Other members of the primate family include monkeys, apes, and even humans! So are all primates’ omnivores like baboons? 

Baboons are part of the monkey family – there are 23 members of the Old World Monkey group and baboons are one of them. So, monkeys are omnivores. Most of a monkey’s diet is made up of nuts, fruits, seeds, and flowers, but they will also eat meat too!

Monkeys will eat insects, spiders, small lizards, and bird’s eggs. Apes, which is the group that includes gorillas, chimpanzees, orangutans, gibbons, bonobos, and siamangs, are mostly herbivores, so most of their diet comes from fruit, vegetation, and even mineral-rich soil.

Baboons in Kenya
Baboons in Kenya

With that being said, apes may sometimes supplement small animals such as insects, birds, and small mammals. 

Humans are considered to be omnivores because most humans eat plants (such as fruits or vegetables) and meat (from animals and also animal products like milk and eggs). 

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In captivity, do baboons eat meat? 

In captivity, such as in zoos, baboons are usually fed a diet of fruit, nuts, vegetables, and primate chow. Primate chow is a bit like dog chow that you might buy your pet at the store and it has ingredients such as poultry fat and dried egg, as well as ground wheat, corn, and soy.  

Do baboons eat meat?

Where do baboons live? 

There are five different types of baboons (chacma baboons, Guinea baboons, olive baboons, sacred baboons, and yellow baboons). All of these baboons live in central Africa.

Countries that these Old World Monkeys can be found in are Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, and Sudan.

In these countries, baboons can be found in a wide variety of habitats and are very adaptable animals. Most baboons live in semi-arid habitats, such as savannas and bushlands, but others live in tropical forests or mountains.

When looking for a place to live, baboons will search for an area that has tall trees or cliff faces to sleep in and a good supply of water. 

RELATED: Why Do Monkeys Steal Other Monkeys’ Babies?

What is the largest species of baboon? 

The chacma baboon is the largest member of the baboon family. Males usually weigh about 66 pounds, but full-grown females are usually only half that size. 

What is the smallest species of baboon? 

The smallest species of baboon is the sacred baboon. Full-grown male sacred baboons usually only weigh about 37 pounds and females usually only weigh about 22 pounds.  

Family of sacred baboons
Family of sacred baboons

What is the difference between Old World Monkeys and New World Monkeys? 

All members of the monkey family are broken up into two groups – Old World Monkeys and New World Monkeys.

Old World Monkeys have narrower noses and downward-facing nostrils (like humans have) where New World Monkeys have broad noses with outwardly facing nostrils. Old World Monkeys have opposing thumbs that allow them to handle small objects easily but New World Monkeys do not have these opposing thumbs. 

Some other Old World Monkeys are macaques, mandrills, and proboscis monkeys. Members of the Old World Monkey group are more closely related to apes and humans. Some examples of New World Monkeys are spider monkeys and howler monkeys.