Tuesday 18 June
Diana guenon (Cercopithecus diana)
Diana guenon fact file
- Find out more
- Print factsheet
Diana guenon description
The Diana guenon is one of the most threatened and yet least known African monkeys. It is a medium sized guenon, with a slender build, long legs and a long tail that is often carried in a ‘question mark’ curve (4). Its face is black and framed with white cheeks, beard and brow line. The front of the chest and inner arms are also white, while the outer limbs, tail and belly are covered in black fur. Running down the outer thighs is a conspicuous diagonal white stripe (4), and the rump bears red or cream fur (5). Males and females are similar in appearance, though males are significantly larger in size (5).
- Also known as
- Diana monkey.
- Cercopithèque Diane.
- Male head-body length: 51 – 62 cm (2)
- Female head-body length: 42 – 45 cm (2)
- Male tail length: 76 – 90 cm (2)
- Female tail length: 52 – 73 cm (2)
- Male weight: 5 – 5.4 kg (2)
- Female weight: 4 – 5 kg (2)
- Living in trees.
- Active during the day.
- Primary rainforest is rainforest that has remained undisturbed for a long time and has reached a mature condition.
- Secondary rainforest
- Rainforest that has re-grown after a major disturbance, such as fire or timber harvest, but has not yet reached the mature state of primary forest.
- A population usually restricted to a geographical area that differs from other populations of the same species, but not to the extent of being classified as a separate species.
- IUCN Red List (October, 2008)
- Richardson, M. (2006) Pers. comm.
- CITES (February, 2004)
- Alden, P., Estes, R., Schlitter, D. and McBride, B. (1996) Collins Field Guide to African Mammals. Harper Collins Publishers, London.
- Macdonald, D. (2001) The New Encyclopedia of Mammals. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
- Nowak, R.M. (1999) Walker’s Mammals of the World. The John Hopkins University Press, Baltimore and London.
- Oates, J.F. (1996) African Primates: Status Survey and Conservation Action Plan IUCN. Gland, Switzerland.
- view the contents of, and Material on, the website;
- download and retain copies of the Material on their personal systems in digital form in low resolution for their own personal use;
- teachers, lecturers and students may incorporate the Material in their educational material (including, but not limited to, their lesson plans, presentations, worksheets and projects) in hard copy and digital format for use within a registered educational establishment, provided that the integrity of the Material is maintained and that copyright ownership and authorship is appropriately acknowledged by the End User.
Diana guenon biology
Diana guenons are arboreal and live in the high canopy of forests where they forage during the day for fruit, leaves and insects (4) (6). They occur in fairly large groups (5 to 50 individuals), which are composed of a single male with up to ten females, and their young (2) (5). It is well known that living in groups is the primary defence strategy amongst diurnal primates, as there is safety in numbers, and individuals can alert others when they sense danger (5). However, Diana guenons seem to have perfected this behaviour and are so alert that other primate species have come to live with them to benefit from their watchful eyes (5). Olive colobus (Procolobus verus) in the Tai National Park, Cote d’Ivoire, are known to form permanent attachments with Diana guenon groups, and other species, such as the red colobus monkey (Piliocolobus badius), form more transient bonds (5). These relationships are successful because, while they benefit from the greater group sizes, they do not suffer from competition for food as each species has a slightly different niche and food source (5).Top
Diana guenon range
The Diana guenon occurs in West Africa, in the Ivory Coast, Liberia and Sierra Leone (2).Top
Diana guenon habitatTop
Diana guenon statusTop
Diana guenon threats
The main subpopulations of the Diana guenon occur in Liberia, where civil war has prevented any comprehensive surveys being conducted on this species’ distribution and status (1). It is estimated that 50 percent of the population in this country could have been lost over the last three generations due to hunting for bushmeat. With no wildlife protection, the increase in availability of firearms, and the continued demand for food, this primate has suffered dramatically (1). Hunting is also intense in other countries, as firearms have become readily available.
Human population increases and settlement in forested areas has caused habitat destruction and degradation in these countries. To accommodate the growing populations, and those people who have moved on from areas where resources have run out, forests have been cleared for wood, crops and cattle (4). As the forests become fragmented, this monkey is less able to establish home ranges, forage widely for food and move safely through the forest (1). Their large body size, conspicuous coat pattern and loud vocalisations render them even more susceptible to being hunted (7).Top
Diana guenon conservation
The instability of these countries, especially Liberia, makes it very hard to provide and promote protection for this species. There are a number of protected areas across its range, though hunting is thought to go on inside them. There is an urgent need for up-to-date information on this species, but this will not be easy to obtain (1).Top
Authenticated (06/02/06) by Matt Richardson, independent primatologist and writer.Top
MyARKive offers the scrapbook feature to signed-up members, allowing you to organize your favourite ARKive images and videos and share them with friends.
Terms and Conditions of Use of Materials
Copyright in this website and materials contained on this website (Material) belongs to Wildscreen or its licensors.
Visitors to this website (End Users) are entitled to:
End Users shall not copy or otherwise extract, alter or manipulate Material other than as permitted in these Terms and Conditions of Use of Materials.
Additional use of flagged material
Green flagged material
Certain Material on this website (Licence 4 Material) displays a green flag next to the Material and is available for not-for-profit conservation or educational use. This material may be used by End Users, who are individuals or organisations that are in our opinion not-for-profit, for their not-for-profit conservation or not-for-profit educational purposes. Low resolution, watermarked images may be copied from this website by such End Users for such purposes. If you require high resolution or non-watermarked versions of the Material, please contact Wildscreen with details of your proposed use.
Creative commons material
Certain Material on this website has been licensed to Wildscreen under a Creative Commons Licence. These images are clearly marked with the Creative Commons buttons and may be used by End Users only in the way allowed by the specific Creative Commons Licence under which they have been submitted. Please see http://creativecommons.org for details.
Any other use
Please contact the copyright owners directly (copyright and contact details are shown for each media item) to negotiate terms and conditions for any use of Material other than those expressly permitted above. Please note that many of the contributors to ARKive are commercial operators and may request a fee for such use.
Save as permitted above, no person or organisation is permitted to incorporate any copyright material from this website into any other work or publication in any format (this includes but is not limited to: websites, Apps, CDs, DVDs, intranets, extranets, signage, digital communications or on printed materials for external or other distribution). Use of the Material for promotional, administrative or for-profit purposes is not permitted.